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Wulf Moon's SUPER SECRETS Workshop & Challenge!

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(@wulfmoon)
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Happy Monday, challenge beasties!

The Super Secrets Year 4 Workshop has officially concluded, and I still need to write your commencement speech. Of course, it’s not over until it’s over, and that means awaiting our final Q4 results. I believe we’re going to end the Contest year with a bang. Eight from this workshop have now won WotF, been a Published Finalist, or both! And several onlurkers have mentioned both publicly and privately that the information in the Super Secrets here have helped them craft their winners. I even had a famous Hollywood screenwriter tell me the Super Secrets here helped her in crafting her first short stories (she had only written screenplays before this). 

That’s what I set out to do when I started this project. To help writers create stories that could reach a professional level and get respectably published.

I’m glad to see that it’s working. 😊

 

For all that follow, here’s your Monday writing prompt! 

Entrapped by superstition OR

Entrapped by false belief.

 

May the prompt spark your creative fires and help you create something wonderful.

Speaking of prompts, did you listen to the WotF Podcast yet from WotF’s Salt Lake FanX presentation on prompts? There’s true gems in there, and Brandon Sanderson makes important points about what he looks for in your stories as a judge. Don’t miss it!

All the beast!

Beastmaster Moon

 

Click HERE for the WotF FanX podcast!

899C2EBA B8F7 4B98 AC5F ABE87BA134D9

 

Click here to JOIN THE WULF PACK!
"Super-Duper Moongirl and the Amazing Moon Dawdler" won Best SFF Story of 2019! Read it in Writers of the Future, Vol. 35. Order HERE!
Need writing help? My award-winning SUPER SECRETS articles are FREE in DreamForge.
IT’S HERE! Many of you have been begging me for the Super Secrets book. The Illustrated workbook is here! And the book How to Write a Howling Good Story is on its way. Find out the latest HERE!

 
Posted : October 24, 2022 9:46 am
Anna X, catherine, storysinger and 1 people reacted
(@annax)
Posts: 136
Silver Member
 
Posted by: @empressed
Posted by: @empressed

Wrote a KYD and a flash out of it, but it hasn't gone anywhere else.

Along with the flash, I've done about 3k in other stories and by the end of the month, I'll have subbed three stories by the end of the month. Still working on q4.

Woops, I forgot to reflect on the year. I'll admit, after finaling last year I'd hoped to win by now, so it's been a disappointing year. Not only have I not finaled again, I've had a ton of rejections. Tell me again, why do I do this? LOL That said, I just subbed my Q4 and I've submitted more stories each month than I ever have before, so I've progressed. I'll accept that as a win. 

You keep at it because it’s your passion and you’re good at it. You can’t help yourself because it’s what you really want to do and I’m rooting for you to getting there very soon! 😊

~ I honestly believe that good stories write themselves. You can always start writing a story, but the characters tell their own tales and if you're lucky enough, you get to merely be in the audience watching everything unfold. ~ 8/1/2022
***
WotF - 2022, V39 Q4: R
WotF - 2022, V40 Q1: Submitted; Q2: Work in Progress;

 
Posted : October 24, 2022 2:49 pm
(@annax)
Posts: 136
Silver Member
 

Congratulations to everyone on their updates! I’m amazed reading some of the updates and how much everyone has accomplished!

I wrote 1 KYD, my Q4 V39 entry, got two rejections from two different contests, and am working on 4 stories for Zombies Need Brains, and hoping to write another KYD.

Thank you for the encouragement by showing how you’ve progressed! 😊 

~ I honestly believe that good stories write themselves. You can always start writing a story, but the characters tell their own tales and if you're lucky enough, you get to merely be in the audience watching everything unfold. ~ 8/1/2022
***
WotF - 2022, V39 Q4: R
WotF - 2022, V40 Q1: Submitted; Q2: Work in Progress;

 
Posted : October 24, 2022 2:55 pm
empressed
(@empressed)
Posts: 214
Silver Member
 

@annax Thanks, Anna! You are sweet and I appreciate it!  Sometimes we need someone to throw us encouragement. ❤️

Victoria Dixon
Author of Mourn Their Courage
a 2010 Sandy Writing Contest Finalist
A Tribble Ate My Lunch: a Star Trek Cookbook (unpublished)
R=24
HM= 7
SHM=4
Finalist=1

 
Posted : October 24, 2022 3:18 pm
catherine, Scott_M_Sands, storysinger and 3 people reacted
Scott_M_Sands
(@scott_m_sands)
Posts: 434
Gold Member
 

He sniffed at the emptiness inside the Wulf's cave. Little dwelled in the faint torchlight, save for a few shattered bones and the echoes of previous souls. Their names lay scrawled on the wall in blood.

Where was the Keeper?

No matter. He knew his purpose, just as those before him.

Wind rattled against a bone fragment at his feet. Its sharp edge beckoned. It would do.

"I'm ready for Year Five. I'm in."

He faced the bloodied wall and scribed his name to the darkness.

"Many people will tell you that you can't write. Let no one say that you don't." -Ken Rand
V36-37: R x6
V38: R, HM, R, HM
V39: HM, HM, HM, HM
V40: P

 
Posted : October 29, 2022 9:04 am
Todd Jones, crlisle, Wulf Moon and 3 people reacted
(@aivanther)
Posts: 26
Bronze Member
 

@scott_m_sands It's sign up time?  Well count me in.

Vol 37 Q4-SHM
Vol 38 Q1-HM Q2-DNP Q3-DNP Q4-HM
Vol 39 Q1-HM Q2-HM Q3- DNP Q4- HM
Vol 40 Q1- Submitted

 
Posted : October 31, 2022 8:36 am
Wulf Moon reacted
empressed
(@empressed)
Posts: 214
Silver Member
 

Whether I'm accepted or thrown into the darkness (with much weeping and gnashing of teeth), I'm in.

Victoria Dixon
Author of Mourn Their Courage
a 2010 Sandy Writing Contest Finalist
A Tribble Ate My Lunch: a Star Trek Cookbook (unpublished)
R=24
HM= 7
SHM=4
Finalist=1

 
Posted : October 31, 2022 9:20 am
Wulf Moon reacted
(@wulfmoon)
Posts: 2930
Platinum Plus Moderator
Topic starter
 

Hello, Challenge Beasties! I've been busy getting the next SUPER SECRETS of Writing article written for DreamForge by today's deadline, so I can come up for air again. You're going to love this next one in DreamForge Anvil magazine! It's on the most important element of storytelling that I teach!

I've got an edit for a client that's going to take me at least a week to complete, and them I'm teaching my "Winning Stories" masterclass at Fyrecon Online on November 11th, so I'd better write up your Year 4 Workshop commencement before starting those projects. As to Year 5? I appreciate all the enthusiasm, but please hold your horses!:) I'll make an announcement as to my future plans soon.

Today, I'm here for one purpose: your Monday writing prompt! Drumroll, please!

 

Abandoned ship OR

Abandon ship!

 

This comes directly from the Illustrated Super Secrets of Writing workbook's d100 prompt generator! Hopefully, I haven't used those ones before. Smile  

Happy writing!

Beastmaster Moon

 

 

 

 

Click here to JOIN THE WULF PACK!
"Super-Duper Moongirl and the Amazing Moon Dawdler" won Best SFF Story of 2019! Read it in Writers of the Future, Vol. 35. Order HERE!
Need writing help? My award-winning SUPER SECRETS articles are FREE in DreamForge.
IT’S HERE! Many of you have been begging me for the Super Secrets book. The Illustrated workbook is here! And the book How to Write a Howling Good Story is on its way. Find out the latest HERE!

 
Posted : October 31, 2022 3:20 pm
(@wulfmoon)
Posts: 2930
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Topic starter
 
Posted by: @lost_bard

Check in for September, last month of the Year Four Super Secrets Challenge.

1. I wrote one KYD. Expanded it into an opening scene, but haven't gone beyond that yet.

2.Outlined two novels and started on one. Wrote 6K words on it. Wrote another 6K between two shorts that are both about half-written at this point.

3. Submitted to 7 professional markets.

 

Reflecting on this past year, I can't express how much my writing has improved as a result of this challenge. Obviously, my biggest achievement was placing 3rd in Q2, but the year has been filled with measurable improvements:

a) My writing output increased dramatically. Last year I averaged 1-2 stories/quarter. Now I'm writing 1-2 stories/month. Tripled output.

b) Last year I had a total of 8 submissions to markets, including WotF. This year I've had 79, a ten-fold increase.

c) When this challenge started, I was unpublished. Now I have stories in DreamForge, Factor Four, and Third Flatiron's After the Gold Rush anthology. I also have acceptances in Murderbirds and another amazing anthology (waiting for the contract so I can announce) and--of course--an acceptance in Writers of the Future.

The Super Secrets work. Applying them consistently through smart practice helped me grow from an enthusiastic amateur to an award-winning professional. Thanks @wulfmoon for setting this challenge!

AT LAST! I've caught up with my editing queue enough to finally respond to each of your year-end comments about what you learned and gained from being a part of the Year 4 SUPER SECRETS Workshop and Challenge. Of course, results aren't over, even though the Contest year is. We await your final results in Q4, but yours will be easy, Lost Bard (David). YOU WON WRITERS OF THE FUTURE THIS YEAR! 

Man, that is such a good feeling when you finally win. We are proud of your success, David! I designed the Super Secrets and this workshop to help writers willing to do the work to get respectably published. And if you can use the principles taught here to help you get your win, all the better! You are the eighth person, David, that has taken this annual year-long workshop that has either won Writers of the Future, become a Published Finalist, or both! Seeing workshop members level up makes this endeavor so worthwhile. I've also watched you in some of my workshops outside of here, and saw you create in my KYD masterclass the story that became your first sale in that respected publication, DreamForge! That was an exciting moment for me when you read your result to the class. I knew you had a winner, and it happened because you did the work, and did everything you could to grow in knowledge and hone your craft. Well done!

And look at the change in your output during the course of this workshop. You went from submitting eight stories in a year to seventy-nine in a year! A ten-fold increase indeed! That's miraculous growth! And it was more than output, it's obvious the quality of your writing skyrocketed as well. You've had your breakout moment where a writer has been flatlining for years, and suddenly they get a spike, then another, then another. Look at all of those respected publications you're now in! And after you wrote this, you also were awarded the David Farland Endowment to Superstars--registration, airfare, hotel, daily expense per diem--worth thousands of dollars!

You've certainly proven what application of these writing principles and smart, diligent practice can accomplish. This is a helluva record for a helluva breakout year!

Finally, thank you for your support as my Keeper of Records. You've been a fantastic help here.

Howling good work, Challenge Beastie! Go forth and conquer!

Beastmaster Moon

Cropped Wolf small

 

 

Click here to JOIN THE WULF PACK!
"Super-Duper Moongirl and the Amazing Moon Dawdler" won Best SFF Story of 2019! Read it in Writers of the Future, Vol. 35. Order HERE!
Need writing help? My award-winning SUPER SECRETS articles are FREE in DreamForge.
IT’S HERE! Many of you have been begging me for the Super Secrets book. The Illustrated workbook is here! And the book How to Write a Howling Good Story is on its way. Find out the latest HERE!

 
Posted : November 1, 2022 6:26 pm
(@wulfmoon)
Posts: 2930
Platinum Plus Moderator
Topic starter
 

Jenny Perry Carr wrote: It's been such a wonderful year of growth for my writing by participating in this challenge. Consistently writing a new story every month (or novel chapters) has pushed me to write on demand and meet deadlines. The days of agonizing over a single story for months is gone. Now I can write a good story in a few writing sessions (without pain!). I've started to see success for my efforts and have published 2 short stories with a third coming out in the Murderbirds anthology early next year. I've even started getting high tier rejections from editors, which shows me I'm moving in the right direction and my skills are improving.

This challenge has become habit now. So much so, that I think I'll keep these practices up moving forward. Writers write, and this challenge really focuses and pushes you. Even if you haven't formally joined the challenge, you can do this on your own at any time and reap the same benefits.

Happy writing!

Jenny, it's been a joy having you in the Super Secrets Workshop & Challenge in this fourth year. I'm happy you've broken free of agonizing over a single story for months. Constantly revising a story can grind everything unique out of it, and while our editing skills may increase, our writing skills atrophy. Writing fresh stories forces us to apply the knowledge we learn, and make it easier to write because our synaptic writing pathways have been fortified through regular practice. With momentum working for us (that no pain thing you speak of), Flow state occurs, and our greatest works can be produced. That you've had two short stories published and another coming out in Murderbirds from your efforts in this workshop year shows smart practice is paying off.

Guess what? The majority of those that write never get published. Sad, but true. Writing at a professional level is much more challenging than it looks, and because of that, writers give up. You've stayed the course, and look what you've accomplished in one year! And you're going to have a story in a beautiful printed book! A book with your words in it that you can hold in your hands. That's one of the most wonderful validations you can have as a writer. Someone paid you for your words, and just like all those authors you've read in books over your lifetime, you're now one of them, too. 

Enjoy the moment. 

I know you'll have many more. 

Congratulations on a howling good year, Jenny! Go forth and conquer!

All the beast!

Beastmaster Moon

Cropped Wolf small

 

Click here to JOIN THE WULF PACK!
"Super-Duper Moongirl and the Amazing Moon Dawdler" won Best SFF Story of 2019! Read it in Writers of the Future, Vol. 35. Order HERE!
Need writing help? My award-winning SUPER SECRETS articles are FREE in DreamForge.
IT’S HERE! Many of you have been begging me for the Super Secrets book. The Illustrated workbook is here! And the book How to Write a Howling Good Story is on its way. Find out the latest HERE!

 
Posted : November 1, 2022 6:50 pm
David Hankins
(@lost_bard)
Posts: 413
Gold Member
 
Posted by: @wulfmoon
Posted by: @lost_bard

Check in for September, last month of the Year Four Super Secrets Challenge.

1. I wrote one KYD. Expanded it into an opening scene, but haven't gone beyond that yet.

2.Outlined two novels and started on one. Wrote 6K words on it. Wrote another 6K between two shorts that are both about half-written at this point.

3. Submitted to 7 professional markets.

 

Reflecting on this past year, I can't express how much my writing has improved as a result of this challenge. Obviously, my biggest achievement was placing 3rd in Q2, but the year has been filled with measurable improvements:

a) My writing output increased dramatically. Last year I averaged 1-2 stories/quarter. Now I'm writing 1-2 stories/month. Tripled output.

b) Last year I had a total of 8 submissions to markets, including WotF. This year I've had 79, a ten-fold increase.

c) When this challenge started, I was unpublished. Now I have stories in DreamForge, Factor Four, and Third Flatiron's After the Gold Rush anthology. I also have acceptances in Murderbirds and another amazing anthology (waiting for the contract so I can announce) and--of course--an acceptance in Writers of the Future.

The Super Secrets work. Applying them consistently through smart practice helped me grow from an enthusiastic amateur to an award-winning professional. Thanks @wulfmoon for setting this challenge!

AT LAST! I've caught up with my editing queue enough to finally respond to each of your year-end comments about what you learned and gained from being a part of the Year 4 SUPER SECRETS Workshop and Challenge. Of course, results aren't over, even though the Contest year is. We await your final results in Q4, but yours will be easy, Lost Bard (David). YOU WON WRITERS OF THE FUTURE THIS YEAR! 

Man, that is such a good feeling when you finally win. We are proud of your success, David! I designed the Super Secrets and this workshop to help writers willing to do the work to get respectably published. And if you can use the principles taught here to help you get your win, all the better! You are the eighth person, David, that has taken this annual year-long workshop that has either won Writers of the Future, become a Published Finalist, or both! Seeing workshop members level up makes this endeavor so worthwhile. I've also watched you in some of my workshops outside of here, and saw you create in my KYD masterclass the story that became your first sale in that respected publication, DreamForge! That was an exciting moment for me when you read your result to the class. I knew you had a winner, and it happened because you did the work, and did everything you could to grow in knowledge and hone your craft. Well done!

And look at the change in your output during the course of this workshop. You went from submitting eight stories in a year to seventy-nine in a year! A ten-fold increase indeed! That's miraculous growth! And it was more than output, it's obvious the quality of your writing skyrocketed as well. You've had your breakout moment where a writer has been flatlining for years, and suddenly they get a spike, then another, then another. Look at all of those respected publications you're now in! And after you wrote this, you also were awarded the David Farland Endowment to Superstars--registration, airfare, hotel, daily expense per diem--worth thousands of dollars!

You've certainly proven what application of these writing principles and smart, diligent practice can accomplish. This is a helluva record for a helluva breakout year!

Finally, thank you for your support as my Keeper of Records. You've been a fantastic help here.

Howling good work, Challenge Beastie! Go forth and conquer!

Beastmaster Moon

Cropped Wolf small

 

 

Thank you for your kind words, your guidance, and encouragement. This challenge made a world of difference in my writing.

Winner, Volume 39, 2nd Quarter, 3rd Place
Subscribe to The Lost Bard's Letter at www.davidhankins.com
Published Stories:
"A Properly Spiced Gingerbread" - Critters Best Magical Realism Story of 2022
"The Last Quest of Corbin the Coward"
"Reassessed Value" - Tangent Online 2022 Recommended Reading List
”Hell’s Bureaucracy”
Coming Soon:
"Felix and the Flamingo" in Murderbirds!
"Another Day on the Orbital Ranch" in DreamForge Magazine

 
Posted : November 2, 2022 7:23 am
Wulf Moon reacted
empressed
(@empressed)
Posts: 214
Silver Member
 

Completed 2 Kyds and 2 short stories, but am unsatisfied. I'm in the rut before the growth spurt and I hate being here. Listening to a class now....

I submitted four stories last month, three the previous month, two before that... you get the idea, so I'm pleased with my submission rate improving. 

Victoria Dixon
Author of Mourn Their Courage
a 2010 Sandy Writing Contest Finalist
A Tribble Ate My Lunch: a Star Trek Cookbook (unpublished)
R=24
HM= 7
SHM=4
Finalist=1

 
Posted : November 2, 2022 11:03 am
(@wulfmoon)
Posts: 2930
Platinum Plus Moderator
Topic starter
 
Posted by: @jarrodkwilliams

This year has transformed my writing. I've gone from writing maybe one story in a three-month period to easily clearing the monthly requirements. I've gone from submitting once in a while to regularly sending work out (5 submissions each of the last 3 months). Despite some personal life and professional disruption over the last three months, I've maintained extremely high amounts of productivity. I had a story published in an anthology and received a personal rejection from one of my dream markets (Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction). 

 

I will be continuing this practice moving forward as I begin work for Volume 40 submissions and moving forward. I'm excited about how far I've come this year, but at the same time, I'm focused on improving with the tools the challenge and the super secrets have given me.

A pleasure to watch your progress this year as well, Jarrod. You were writing one story every three months, and you took on a challenge to write a story a month, plus monthly KYDs? Good for you! That takes courage! We cannot know our limits until we test them. And you know what? We find out when we stand at that edge those limits are still far out there in the unknown. We are capable of so much more than we think, and you've proven that this year.

Just sticking with the monthly challenge requirements was a tremendous accomplishment, especially with personal life trials. But you also took advantage of a publishing opportunity I told the Wulf Pack Writers about (a group everyone in this challenge is also in), and now you're a published writer in an anthology! Validation is so important for aspiring writers, because we face a lot of rejection in the apprentice period of our writing. It can bring us to a halt, even make us so discouraged that we quit. Not you! You stood your ground and carried on to the end of the workshop year. Well done!

Be proud of your sale. Be proud of your increased output. Be proud of that nice personal, which does get you on an editor's radar. Keep sending to her. Break that door down by making her know you mean business. Good writing combined with persistence is the way in to many a market. 

Congratulations on your diligent efforts and accomplishments this year. You're a published writer! 

I look forward to hearing of your future accomplishments, Jarrod! Go forth and conquer!

All the beast!

Beastmaster Moon

Cropped Wolf small

 

Click here to JOIN THE WULF PACK!
"Super-Duper Moongirl and the Amazing Moon Dawdler" won Best SFF Story of 2019! Read it in Writers of the Future, Vol. 35. Order HERE!
Need writing help? My award-winning SUPER SECRETS articles are FREE in DreamForge.
IT’S HERE! Many of you have been begging me for the Super Secrets book. The Illustrated workbook is here! And the book How to Write a Howling Good Story is on its way. Find out the latest HERE!

 
Posted : November 2, 2022 1:08 pm
(@wulfmoon)
Posts: 2930
Platinum Plus Moderator
Topic starter
 
Posted by: @physa

Year in review: While I do have a lot of room for improvement, I improved noticeably during Moon's Volume 39 challenge. 

  • It instilled good habits of writing and submitting. I can't stress this enough because without this challenge I would have done less. Each quarter I almost didn't make it, but knowing others were meeting the challenge and having Moon cheer us on meant that I was going to for sure meet each quarter's challenge no matter what was going on outside of writing: Clemson homecoming, planning celebration of life for parents, keeping up with 3 separate adjunct college teaching jobs, hurt wrist (etc.), peanut butter sickness, you name it. Life can really throw curve balls at a person.
  • Submitting to pro markets (at least 3/quarter) meant that I had less time for twitching for any one submission (including WOTF results) AND I received some nice personal rejections (notably from Dreamforge who is awesome in working with almost there writers and podcastle (their rejection would up being my Q2 HM, my first ever Honorable Mention in WOTF contest). It also meant that I have built up a nice collection of short stories, many of which read well.
  • The KYD/month was the hardest part of the challenge which is weird. BUT following the KYD process to getting a 250 word product is difficult and I'm still working on developing this skill.
  • One of the things that Moon challenged his year 3s to do was to mentor one of us year 4s. I was lucky to get paired with Candice Lisle who is an awesome writer and and awesome cheerleader. She has really helped me a lot including what is needed for a WOTF story to place vs. what my story had. She was kind and direct and it has meant all the difference in my writing.
  • When I started this challenge I was taking David Farland's 318R class. And in November I did Fyrecon (which included a Moon workshop). By the time I'm writing this, I believe I have take all of Moon's writing workshops to date and each are diamond blades to help me sharpen my writing. I'm currently retaking the 318R class with Rafael and I'm starting to really put into practice the teachings I've collected over the year to practice. One of the greatest benefits of the 318R class is working with a small group of similarly focused folk. That has made a world of difference!
  • One of the things the Farland course encourages is to read the stories published in the WOTF volumes... ALL of them. And that is quite illuminating. I've also made an effort to pick books to read that I can learn from.
  • I really miss David Farland. He was a giant of a man and extremely generous with his time.
  • I really enjoy WOTF podcasts, the online writing workshop, and the Q&A sessions. Really looking forward to the upcoming one with Orson Scott Card.
  • Before Moon's Volume 39 challenge, all I was doing was collecting Rs from WOTF. Getting an R is tough on the ego and it can either discourage a person or light a fire in that person to do better. I'm a light fire under me to do better sort of person. I can't thank Candice Lisle and Ceci Vaughn and Stephanie Troeth enough for their patience in helping me get more into my character's head and have them react to the plot more in a realistic way. The whole B line being just as important (if not more) than the A line. That was something that was for sure lacking in my writing. Thanks to their efforts plus others in the forum (so many helpful people here in the forum: e.g. Tim, Victoria, David, Scott, Dustin, the list is long), I have now broken my straight R curse. Q1 I got a RWC, Q2 and Q3 I received honorable mentions!!! Fingers crossed for my Q4.
  • I'm looking forward to Volume 40 and learning more about writing! I already have a lot of progress made on what will be my Q1 piece. PLUS my Q2 HM will be part of a book I have been working on for a while which I now have brand new fuel to proceed.
  • So happy to be able to FINALLY use the: hm sign. happysigh hearts dancingbanana  
  • And finally, my sincere thanks to @wulfmoon for pushing us and making us see that his impossible writing challenge was possible. AND when it comes to pass that one of us wins (e.g. David Hankins), we will already have in place good writing habits to propel our pro writing careers to greater heights.

We come to Amy's (physa's) comments on the benefits she enjoyed by challenging herself to take this Year 4 SUPER SECRETS of Writing Workshop. We are all at different places in our writer's journey, and when Amy began this workshop, I know she had a goal to receive her first Honorable Mention in Writers of the Future. That's a noble goal, because when you hit that mark, it means your writing was strong enough that the Contest sent you a certificate to let you know it. It's a high threshold, and you hit it this year, not just once, but twice in a row, something you had never done before. Well done, Amy!

I'm also happy you benefited from my mentoring program, where I encouraged graduates from the Year 3 Top Gun SUPER SECRETS Workshop to help the aspiring writers in the new Year 4 class. Candice reached out to you, and you humbly accepted her help, and look how that assisted you to level up! I'm glad you and others are benefiting from this program that goes on behind the scenes, but is so important in aiding aspiring writers get that personal help from more experienced writers to hone their craft and level up. I trust both of you will continue to work together. Finding both a writing partner and a writing circle is a proven method to help you advance in your skills.

You also persevered through life trials (I remember the peanut butter poisoning), but you found a way to prevail and never missed your challenge requirements. That will serve you well on the road ahead. The writer's path is not an easy one, but the writers that make it are the ones that get back up when they're knocked down and keep heading up the trail. That intrepid attitude will serve you well--it's the hallmark of every professional writer.

May we hear good things about your upcoming Q4 results in WotF Vol. 39, and may you keep leveling up in those certificates to gain your win. This is a marathon, and I know you will go the distance. Even though Year 4 has ended, the Wulf Pack will continue to cheer you on!

Go forth and conquer!

All the beast!

Beastmaster Moon

Cropped Wolf small

 

Click here to JOIN THE WULF PACK!
"Super-Duper Moongirl and the Amazing Moon Dawdler" won Best SFF Story of 2019! Read it in Writers of the Future, Vol. 35. Order HERE!
Need writing help? My award-winning SUPER SECRETS articles are FREE in DreamForge.
IT’S HERE! Many of you have been begging me for the Super Secrets book. The Illustrated workbook is here! And the book How to Write a Howling Good Story is on its way. Find out the latest HERE!

 
Posted : November 2, 2022 1:40 pm
Scott_M_Sands
(@scott_m_sands)
Posts: 434
Gold Member
 
Posted by: @wulfmoon

Be proud of that nice personal, which does get you on an editor's radar. Keep sending to her. Break that door down by making her know you mean business. Good writing combined with persistence is the way in to many a market. 

Ooh. This is a great reminder to look back over markets that I've had personal rejections from and target those markets with great, new stories.

Thanks.  Smile

"Many people will tell you that you can't write. Let no one say that you don't." -Ken Rand
V36-37: R x6
V38: R, HM, R, HM
V39: HM, HM, HM, HM
V40: P

 
Posted : November 2, 2022 6:07 pm
(@wulfmoon)
Posts: 2930
Platinum Plus Moderator
Topic starter
 
Posted by: @scott_m_sands
Posted by: @wulfmoon

Be proud of that nice personal, which does get you on an editor's radar. Keep sending to her. Break that door down by making her know you mean business. Good writing combined with persistence is the way in to many a market. 

Ooh. This is a great reminder to look back over markets that I've had personal rejections from and target those markets with great, new stories.

Thanks.  Smile

You’re welcome. I’ll even open my next cover letter with, “Thank you for your kind words on my last submission, and encouraging me to send you more. Please find attached my fantasy story … ”

Click here to JOIN THE WULF PACK!
"Super-Duper Moongirl and the Amazing Moon Dawdler" won Best SFF Story of 2019! Read it in Writers of the Future, Vol. 35. Order HERE!
Need writing help? My award-winning SUPER SECRETS articles are FREE in DreamForge.
IT’S HERE! Many of you have been begging me for the Super Secrets book. The Illustrated workbook is here! And the book How to Write a Howling Good Story is on its way. Find out the latest HERE!

 
Posted : November 2, 2022 7:06 pm
(@wulfmoon)
Posts: 2930
Platinum Plus Moderator
Topic starter
 
GE59 Cover for site

My story “Sharnathium” was published in Galaxy’s Edge magazine today. Editor Lezli Robyn when writing to me said: “I find your story ABSOLUTELY beautiful.” In her intro to the issue, Lezli said: “Wulf Moon’s “Sharnathium” explores what an astralmancer god would risk to experience corporeal pleasure just one more time. Despite a completely alien voice and transcendent setting, the protagonist of the story is so completely relatable, and the consequences of his actions transport us to a surreal conclusion that no one could have ever imagined possible.”

FREE TO READ, but only for a limited time! Or subscribe, support the magazine, and enjoy all the lovely stories in their pages. Cheers!

| Galaxy's Edge Magazine (galaxysedge.com)

Click here to JOIN THE WULF PACK!
"Super-Duper Moongirl and the Amazing Moon Dawdler" won Best SFF Story of 2019! Read it in Writers of the Future, Vol. 35. Order HERE!
Need writing help? My award-winning SUPER SECRETS articles are FREE in DreamForge.
IT’S HERE! Many of you have been begging me for the Super Secrets book. The Illustrated workbook is here! And the book How to Write a Howling Good Story is on its way. Find out the latest HERE!

 
Posted : November 3, 2022 6:15 pm
Anna X, David Hankins, AlexB and 1 people reacted
(@wulfmoon)
Posts: 2930
Platinum Plus Moderator
Topic starter
 
Posted by: @scott_m_sands

Looking back at this year. Hmmm. Honestly, I haven't reached as many of my goals (particularly regarding publication) as I would have liked. Not through lack of study or effort. But that's the game. I did reach my personal goal as far as submissions go (100+)--I've had 126 submissions since January (with a nice little February bonus of having more subs than days in that month). That's helped me learn the importance of targeting specific markets for stories.

I've also really appreciated that this challenge included novel chapters as an option--my first draft is done (approx. 90k) and I hope to have the editing completed soon, ready for some feedback from beta readers. I'm really excited about the novel. While I was already setting aside time to work on this regularly, this WOTF challenge did help me continue that productivity.

Aside from the skill of killing of those unwanted, unnecessary words, I've also appreciated about the KYD challenges the opportunity to explore genres I wouldn't normally do. I want to write novels. Totally confident of that. But I don't necessarily want to write novels across all genres. I'm just not interested enough in some genres to do that. But the KYDs have allowed me to explore some of these I wouldn't normally do and practice new skills--as well as finding out many new things from research, as I had no idea about some elements of the genre!

I'll say this: I'm glad to have completed all requirements of this year's challenge. I first joined the forum a couple years back and tagged along as a lurker to the previous few years' challenges. Wulf Moon's willingness to post his secrets of writing and continue encouraging new writers is just brilliant. Brilliant.

So thanks, Moon.

We come to Scott Sands remarks on what taking on the Year 4 SUPER SECRETS Workshop & Challenge did for him. 

Wow! That's a HUGE number of market submissions in one year, Scott! Over one hundred! Well done! Some only submit to the Contest because they feel safe with the anonymity, but the truth is there's a much larger world out there. If we want to progress, we need to send our stories out into the world and accept that rejection is part of our apprenticeship. We have nothing to fear but fear itself! If we don't learn to deal with rejections, we won't go far in our careers. Even Orson Scott Card with all his sales and awards can still get rejected. Doesn't mean he's a bad writer or that he wrote a bad story--he's one of the best! Markets have specific needs, and the story we sent may not be the right fit. Sending the story back out and writing our next is the best way to deal with rejection. And one day, it won't come back. We'll get that delightful letter that says they'd like to buy and publish our story. Or novel. All that writing you've done means the chance of selling your novel when you're finished with the final went way up, because your storytelling craft went way up. Had to. That's all that can happen with focused study of writing principles and smart practice. I commend you for all the work you've done in that regard. I am aware of how hard you've worked at this. This is the way.

Good to hear you've tried other genres through the KYD prompts. I view every story I write as a chance to expand my horizons, and to surprise my readers with something new. Even if you have a favorite genre, it's good you've stretched the boundaries of your imagination, because that means you'll have the power to create new surprises for your readers. Exploration can also help you settle in on a niche that's unique to you, and if you develop it right, you can create your own genre, like WotF winner Ken Liu did with silkpunk. I am very happy you've used the KYD prompts and monthly challenge so effectively. You will be a better writer for it. Smile

Finally, congratulations on completing the first draft of your novel! WELL DONE! I know a couple of you took that option to write novel chapters this year. To write THE END on a novel manuscript is a level-up moment! May you find a good home for it, or indie publish it yourself and have much success. Done is beautiful, and you got the job done. I look forward to hearing where you take it from here.

Thank you for joining the workshop, for being a good sport, and for your kind words. It's been a pleasure to get to know you as a Challenge Beastie! Best of success to your writer's journey!

All the beast!

Beastmaster Moon

Cropped Wolf small

Click here to JOIN THE WULF PACK!
"Super-Duper Moongirl and the Amazing Moon Dawdler" won Best SFF Story of 2019! Read it in Writers of the Future, Vol. 35. Order HERE!
Need writing help? My award-winning SUPER SECRETS articles are FREE in DreamForge.
IT’S HERE! Many of you have been begging me for the Super Secrets book. The Illustrated workbook is here! And the book How to Write a Howling Good Story is on its way. Find out the latest HERE!

 
Posted : November 4, 2022 2:37 pm
Anna X, David Hankins, Scott_M_Sands and 1 people reacted
(@wulfmoon)
Posts: 2930
Platinum Plus Moderator
Topic starter
 
Super Secrets with Purple Border


As some of you have likely been wondering: Where's the Year 5 Super Secrets Workshop & Challenge enrollment announcement? Come on, Moon! We're a month into the new Contest year already! Yeah, Moon, where is it? I've been wondering that myself!  

I do know some of you have been waiting patiently to enroll this year. Well, here's the announcement, and it pains me to have to say it. While the Super Secrets Workshops are continuing on outside of the WotF Forum, I don't have the time this year to conduct one in here. Even a self-directed one, which still takes time to cheer everyone on and to offer guidance and help. Don't worry, I'm still dedicating my efforts to helping aspiring writers advance, but I'm finding I can't be at two (or more!) places at once. And the Super Secrets Workshops are expanding into new venues in 2023, which will take even more of my time, and travel! 

It doesn't mean I'm ending this project in here for good. I'll still post occasional SUPER SECRETS, and of course your Monday prompts. (TODAY'S MONDAY PROMPT IS: CHALLENGE ACCEPTED.) But because the Super Secrets have become an expanding entity, I'll have to see what size my baby kraken has become next year and what obligations I'll have. I already have a large writing group outside of here known as the Wulf Pack Writers that I support daily. And I have multiple projects going on at the moment with my publishing company, Wulf Moon Enterprises. Many of you obtained its first release, The Illustrated Super Secrets of Writing workbook. Well, the book that compiles, expands, and adds to all these Super Secrets that began here is coming next: How to Write a Howling Good Story. (See below for how that's coming along.)

I thank all of you that participated in this workshop over the last four years. I began this project after I won Writers of the Future. I figured I had learned a thing or two along the way, and if I explained it in fun, easy to apply terms, it would help many of you. Turns out, I was right. Eight from this workshop have now won Writers of the Future, been published finalists, or both. Others have mentioned publicly and privately how much the Super Secrets helped them in crafting their winner. There have been more WotF Finalists from the Super Secrets Workshop than I can count anymore. And many in this workshop have leveled up from unpublished writers, to professionally published writers, to pro career writers. It's fun seeing their names in respected publications, even dominating in some anthology tables of contents. That's what learning writing principles and putting them into smart practice through creating fresh stories will do for you. It yields rewards.

I thank all of you that have participated in this workshop, have enjoyed the material as onlurkers, or have supported me in other ways in this endeavor. I have very much appreciated all the kind comments--some of the most surprising by industry professionals outside of here that discovered the Super Secrets through internet searches! But most of all, I've enjoyed helping you believe that you could do this, and then watching that belief inspire you to do the diligent work that yielded level-up moments in your writer journeys. Kudos to each of you!

Keep learning. Keep writing fresh, original stories. Keep sending them out.

There is a good reward for your efforts, as you've seen demonstrated repeatedly in this workshop. The program and challenge requirements are still listed here, for anyone that would like to personally take them on. I thank this year's Keeper of Records, David Hankins (our newest winner in Volume 39!), for helping me keep up with the many accomplishments of this group. 

TO YOUR FUTURE!

All the beast!

Beastmaster Moon

Original3.HowlingBanner

  

 

Click here to JOIN THE WULF PACK!
"Super-Duper Moongirl and the Amazing Moon Dawdler" won Best SFF Story of 2019! Read it in Writers of the Future, Vol. 35. Order HERE!
Need writing help? My award-winning SUPER SECRETS articles are FREE in DreamForge.
IT’S HERE! Many of you have been begging me for the Super Secrets book. The Illustrated workbook is here! And the book How to Write a Howling Good Story is on its way. Find out the latest HERE!

 
Posted : November 7, 2022 3:39 pm
Kelly Morgan, Anna X, catherine and 10 people reacted
(@ccrawford)
Posts: 263
Silver Member
 

@wulfmoon Thank you so much for everything you've done here in the forum. If you hadn't started the Super Secrets challenges, I never would've jumped in, and the experience of being in the Wulf Pack has been literally life-changing for me.  I appreciate everything you've done (and still do) to help other writers!

v35: Q4 - HM
V36: R, R, R, R
V37: SHM, HM, HM, SHM
V38: SHM, HM, HM, HM
V39: HM, R, SHM, HM
Indie author of The Lex Chronicles (Legends of Arameth), and the in-progress Leyward Stones series--including my serial, Macchiatos, Faerie Princes, and Other Things That Happen at Midnight, currently available on Kindle Vella.
Website: http://ccrawfordwriting.com. I also have a newsletter and a blog!
Short story "Our Kind" published in DreamForge Anvil, Issue #5, and also "One Shot at Aeden" published in DreamForge Anvil, Issue #7!

 
Posted : November 7, 2022 3:59 pm
David Hankins
(@lost_bard)
Posts: 413
Gold Member
 

@wulfmoon Thank you so much for running this challenge. It was an education reading through the previous years’ posts and then diving deep into the challenge for Year Four. I enjoyed being the Keeper of Records and I look forward to seeing where the Super Secrets go next!

Winner, Volume 39, 2nd Quarter, 3rd Place
Subscribe to The Lost Bard's Letter at www.davidhankins.com
Published Stories:
"A Properly Spiced Gingerbread" - Critters Best Magical Realism Story of 2022
"The Last Quest of Corbin the Coward"
"Reassessed Value" - Tangent Online 2022 Recommended Reading List
”Hell’s Bureaucracy”
Coming Soon:
"Felix and the Flamingo" in Murderbirds!
"Another Day on the Orbital Ranch" in DreamForge Magazine

 
Posted : November 7, 2022 4:24 pm
Anna X and Wulf Moon reacted
crlisle
(@crlisle)
Posts: 353
Silver Star Member
 

@wulfmoon your SS workshop changed my life! 5 stories (including flashes) published so far thanks to your teachings and mentoring. Thank you so much for everything! Looking forward to your KickStarter.

2019 Quarters: 3rd -- R, 4th -- R
2020 Quarters: 1st -- R, 2nd -- HM, 3rd -- HM, 4th -- SHM
2021 Quarters: 1st -- HM, 2nd -- HM, 3rd -- HM, 4th -- HM
2022 Quarters: 1st -- SHM, 2nd -- RWC, 3rd -- RWC, 4th -- HM
2023 Quarters: 1st -- pending
Published in: Martian Magazine, Galaxy's Edge magazine, Daily Science Fiction, LTUE Anthology Parliament of Wizards, Sci Fi Lampoon
Critters Award for Best Positive Short Story "Follow the Pretrons"

 
Posted : November 7, 2022 7:04 pm
Yelena
(@scribblesatdusk)
Posts: 224
Silver Member
 

Thanks so much for running it! I wanted to join it ever since I found out about it, but it was too late. I'm really glad I was able to experience it, learn and grow from it.

V36:Q3 HM V37: Q3 R, Q4 SHM V38: R,HM, F, HM V39: HM, SHM, SHM,

 
Posted : November 7, 2022 8:20 pm
Ease
 Ease
(@ease)
Posts: 256
Silver Star Member
 

@wulfmoon grumpy  

 

No, seriously, I am. Those are all wonderful reasons to be busy, and I'm very happy that success is what's preventing you from running it.

 

Fingers crossed you one day find the time to pass the torch onto a suitable protege who can run the Super Secrets Workshop for future writers aspirant. And toes crossed that I've won WOTF and not still in need of the workshop when that time comes  giggle  

VOL 31: R - HM
VOL 38: HM
VOL 39: HM - HM - HM - SHM
VOL 39 Illus: F/DQ

 
Posted : November 8, 2022 4:15 am
Physa/ Guthington/ Amy
(@physa)
Posts: 299
Gold Member
 

@wulfmoon it's been an honor flying under your guidance in the year 4 self directed group. You set a challenge that seemed impossible at times, but... I managed to keep up with it. I now have 3 HMs under my belt thanks to you and this challenge and your encouragement. And I have been imbued with writer habits and writer confidence I didn't have this time last year.

For anyone who would like to do a self directed year 5, you can see what the requirements were for year 4 and no one would stop you from posting your monthly updates here for forumites to cheer you on. For my part, I will continue to push myself and keep working on my writing.

For instance; in October I wrote a fresh story that will be my Q1 [about 9,000 words], I did a KYD [kept it to myself], and am retaking the Farland 318R class [last time I was so overscheduled I had a tough time letting the lessons really sink in]. I had 2 stories returned to me from pro-markets. I did not obtain a superstars scholarship for this upcoming year, but I did try.

Moon, I wish you well as you continue to rock it as a professional writer/editor/bringing stories to life by voicing them/etc. Keep up the great work! I am looking forward to your future stories and books. You done good! 

Go forth and conquer!

WOTF results:
Before Moon's Vol 39 challenge, 6 R's: Vol 31 Q3, Vol 33 Q3, Vol 35, Q4, Vol 37 Q3 and Q4, and Vol 38 Q3.
Vol 39: Q1 RWC, Q2 HM, Q3 HM, Q4 HM
Vol 40: Q1 P
IOTF results:
Vol 39: Q1 HM, Q2 R, Q3 HM, Q4 HM
Vol 40: Q1 P
According to Winston Churchill, "success is going from failure to failure with enthusiasm"
Somehow I lost my Guthington profile, but it's me. Amy Wethington = Guthington = Physa

 
Posted : November 8, 2022 4:46 am
David Hankins, Anna X, Wulf Moon and 1 people reacted
(@aivanther)
Posts: 26
Bronze Member
 

Man, I knew when I missed the sign up last year i would regret it!  Ah well, that's on me.

 

Congratulations on moving this highly valuable work from a passion project to a paid gig.  The success of it all is an inspiration.

Vol 37 Q4-SHM
Vol 38 Q1-HM Q2-DNP Q3-DNP Q4-HM
Vol 39 Q1-HM Q2-HM Q3- DNP Q4- HM
Vol 40 Q1- Submitted

 
Posted : November 8, 2022 7:31 am
David Hankins, Anna X, Wulf Moon and 1 people reacted
(@ajschultz6)
Posts: 46
Bronze Star Member
 

I just want to add to the chorus how much this thread has benefited me as a lurker! I know that's true for so many people. I wish that I'd been able to get in on the workshop one of the previous years, but I will continue to read through this thread and follow along with the Monday prompts. Thank you for all that you do!

v37: Q3HM
v38: Q1R, Q2HM, Q3HM
v39: Q2HM, Q3HM, Q4HM
v40: Q1 In Progress
I'm available for critique exchanges via PM. Note: I will not be available for exchanges from 12/17/22-1/1/23.

 
Posted : November 8, 2022 9:18 am
David Hankins, Anna X, Ease and 1 people reacted
V. R. Lassmann
(@vrlass)
Posts: 56
Bronze Star Member
 

Ok…
I am in this forum for few months now i think and I didn’t notice there was a challenge (still dont know what KYD is)… I was in this thread only for the awesome tips 🙁

<standing-on-the-wharf,-while-nihilistically-smoking-a-cigarette-and-looking-at-the-horizon mode>

Seems like i come at the very perfect moment to grasp a glimpse of something beautiful before it was over…

<mode>
Although i didn’t have that interaction with you @wulfmoon, you have some mind-bending pieces of wisdom written from a kind heart, and my guess the levelups you have seen by now is nowhere near the final quota 😉
Peace,

VR

 
Posted : November 8, 2022 2:19 pm
Scott_M_Sands
(@scott_m_sands)
Posts: 434
Gold Member
 

Moon,

thanks so much for your genuine heart to help fellow writers and see them succeed. YOur advice has been, well ... super. It was great being a lurker for a while and then taking part in the Year 4 challenge. 

I look forward to seeing where you take things from here, and hope to be part of it.

We the blood-oathed salute you, oh Beastmaster.

S

"Many people will tell you that you can't write. Let no one say that you don't." -Ken Rand
V36-37: R x6
V38: R, HM, R, HM
V39: HM, HM, HM, HM
V40: P

 
Posted : November 9, 2022 3:29 am
(@annax)
Posts: 136
Silver Member
 

Hi Moon!

Thank you for all your hard work and dedication and the Super Secrets that you have been sharing freely with everyone on here! 

I’m still pretty new here and haven’t read everything, but I know that you’ve done great giving advice and helping people along in their journeys to becoming better writers and finalists and winners of WotF. I am happy that I have come here and have found you and the Wulf pack and everyone on this forum. Speaking to everyone, helping, being helped, learning, and growing has been a wonderful experience for me. I really enjoyed everything and I hope to be more active to continue passing it forward. 

I haven’t enrolled in any of your years before, but I know you’re only one person that’s taken on many projects and I’m grateful for all you’ve done and is continuing to do for the Wulf pack and the forumites. I wish you much success and if you travel, take lots of pictures and enjoy the scenery too!

~ I honestly believe that good stories write themselves. You can always start writing a story, but the characters tell their own tales and if you're lucky enough, you get to merely be in the audience watching everything unfold. ~ 8/1/2022
***
WotF - 2022, V39 Q4: R
WotF - 2022, V40 Q1: Submitted; Q2: Work in Progress;

 
Posted : November 11, 2022 8:21 pm
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