Unlike last quarter, I always intended this quarterly recap post to have a positive tone. That’s attributable to my having made my first paid sale! Details are below, but first here are my numbers for the second quarter of 2018.
Words written = 9550
Submissions = 43
Rejections = 40
Acceptances = 1!
I already updated the Publications page of this site, but I never officially announced my first sale from last quarter. My middle grade story “Cramping Your Style” will appear in the Fall 2018 issue of Stinkwaves Magazine. This is a non-paying market, but it now holds a special place for me as my first ever acceptance.
As for this quarter’s paid acceptance, my story “Temporally Out of Service” will appear in the January 2019 issue of Broadswords and Blasters. This also is a semi-pro market.
Regardless, I am ecstatic these stories found a home. “Temporally Out of Service” was the first story I ever started writing, though the second story I ever finished. After several rejections, I revised it to account for the many things I’d learned about writing in the interim. I think those changes made it a better story and lead to its acceptance at Broadswords and Blasters.
“Cramping Your Style” was the first middle grade story I attempted. The idea came to me one early morning while on a run, which is when I do a lot of the plotting for my stories.
Now that I’ve patted myself on the back, I should talk about my other numbers for the quarter. I didn’t have quite as productive a quarter based on word count. My goal still was 12,500 words to remain on pace to write 50,000 words for the year. Luckily, since I exceeded my goal in the first quarter, I’m still ahead overall for the first half of the year at 26,950 words.
The submissions and rejections were about twice that of last quarter. The market’s I submitted to had fast response times, and I had three new stories in circulation.
At the same time, I stopped submitting four stories. One, obviously, because it was accepted. The other three are tied together, so much so I plan to combine them into one novella. Tor has a call for 20,000-40,000 word novellas starting at the end of this month. My three stories combined originally equaled only about 11,000 words. However, the third of the trilogy was a 1000 flash fiction piece, my first ever one of those. The feedback from my beta readers on that one was the idea was good, but it was all exposition. They weren’t wrong, so I decided to expand that piece into a fully developed story in hopes of reaching the 20,000 word minimum.
That’s where the majority of my words this quarter wound up. Indeed, 7500 words went to that story whereas the rest were spread across two flash fiction pieces and one nonfiction (essay) piece. I didn’t start writing those 7500 words until Memorial Day weekend, but I got them out over the next month. I’ll try to stop back loading my quarters to take the pressure off.
For this coming quarter, I’m debating how to proceed. I have a story idea that met a call for submission, but that call ended June 30. The story is based on one of the flash fiction pieces I began submitting this past quarter. Do I still write it and see if another market will take it?
The other short story idea I have is one I’d like to collaborate on with one of my beta readers. I plan to take the first stab at it but haven’t started. I think that’s what I’ll attempt next.
Then, if I don’t get distracted by one or more calls for submissions, I think I’ll turn back to children’s manuscripts. It’s been awhile since I wrote one of those, and the ideas are piling up.
And, of course, I need to edit the story for Tor and send it to my beta readers. That story stands at 18,500 words currently. I’m hoping during the first edit I can eat up most of the remaining 1,500 words needed to get to Tor’s minimum.
A big thanks to all my followers who are along with me on this journey. My first paid sale is a huge milestone. Next up is my first professional sale. Hopefully, that’s sooner rather than later.
Photo credit: geralt via Pixabay