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crlisle
(@crlisle)
Bronze Star Member
Posts: 212

You are living the dream SwiftPotato!!! I am totally jealous. Way to go!

2020 Quarters: 1st -- R, 2nd -- HM, 3rd -- HM, 4th -- SHM
2021 Quarters: 1st -- HM, 2nd -- Pending
"The Last Dance" to be published Feb. 2022 in the LTUE Anthology, Parliament of Wizards
"Never give up. Never surrender." - Galaxy Quest

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Posted : December 17, 2019 6:37 am
Corbin.Maxwell
(@corbin-maxwell)
Bronze Star Member
Posts: 223

I read Dave’s post above. Personally, I’m addicted to writing the same as if it were heroin. Since I moved out on my own, I rarely take a day off for the addiction must be fed. I may never win the contest or ever get published, but still the needle goes in everyday. I wrote one 15k story in four days that were full of long sessions at the computer. Sitting there in pain because of my broke-down body, fueled by coffee and monsters, and the need to feed my addiction. And that’s how I write now. I basically wake up feeling like crap from the pain but I sit down and power-up and write until I’m exhausted. Then usually I’m so tired I feel sick and have to lay down for awhile. I have no more distractions because I left them all behind and moved into a small studio apt. So is writing a priority for me? It’s way more than that for it consumes me. No more family or friends to get in the way.

It’s probably very unhealthy for me. But a true addict doesn’t care about the cost; he cares only about the high.

I ain't cut out to be no Jesse James.

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Posted : December 17, 2019 8:42 am
crlisle
(@crlisle)
Bronze Star Member
Posts: 212

#34 Bada Boom - this looks hard, but I will do my best in my 2nd quarter volume 37 entry to provide my hero with hard choices. I sure have learned a lot since I joined this forum in November!!

2020 Quarters: 1st -- R, 2nd -- HM, 3rd -- HM, 4th -- SHM
2021 Quarters: 1st -- HM, 2nd -- Pending
"The Last Dance" to be published Feb. 2022 in the LTUE Anthology, Parliament of Wizards
"Never give up. Never surrender." - Galaxy Quest

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Posted : December 17, 2019 10:22 am
crlisle
(@crlisle)
Bronze Star Member
Posts: 212

Onward, onward

2020 Quarters: 1st -- R, 2nd -- HM, 3rd -- HM, 4th -- SHM
2021 Quarters: 1st -- HM, 2nd -- Pending
"The Last Dance" to be published Feb. 2022 in the LTUE Anthology, Parliament of Wizards
"Never give up. Never surrender." - Galaxy Quest

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Posted : December 17, 2019 10:22 am
rjklee
(@rjklee)
Bronze Star Member
Posts: 172

I feel like Farland expressed both sides of the coin pretty clearly in the essay Going Pro that we read (I’m reading now in prep to get to that assignment done finally). It sounds like he basically says prioritize writing but also take care of your life. Put the freaking fire out, but also make it clear to those you’re with and yourself that you want to put this amount of time into your writing and reach this particular goal, and continue toward that as your handle your other challenges, too.

Two excerpts from the book that kind of point that out:
After graduating college, he admits he couldn’t quite make time, since “between school, a career, and being a new dad I didn’t have time to push my own writing”

And when he starts a novel, he admits that he had other issues to struggle through. “Now the real work began. I had to write a danged novel, and I’d never done it before. So I just sat down and went to work on it. I was very ill at the time with chronic fatigue syndrome, so it turned into an arduous task. I had to quit my job and drop out of school as a senior, but I found that as long as I focused my creative energy on writing, the words flowed pretty well.”

I’d say it makes sense, but you do need to be careful about quitting jobs, school, ignoring family, and such. Losing sight of your life for a while can end up draining your creative energy if you’re not careful, just as much as having a full-time job might, supposedly, take away your writing (not necessarily true—I feel that I had more writing time when I wasn’t freelance and part-time).

I’ll get to that assignment now. Still need to get my KYD done for this month, too. And I have three full short stories being revised. Haven’t quite decided which to send to WotF. Also, finally submitted something to a paying market! I was kind of down on myself, mentally, and almost didn’t, but pushed that aside, and sent off a flash fiction piece to that market posted earlier, Frozen Wavelets. Good luck to everyone else writing or dealing with other challenges!

R.J.K. Lee
WotF 2015-present: HMx6 SHMx1
My blog has monthly lists of upcoming deadlines and submission windows; let them motivate you to be more productive: https://figmentsdiehard.blogspot.com/
Give a listen to my creepy reading of my original flash fiction piece on the December 2020 episode of the Weird Christmas Podcast at the 22:10 mark: https://weirdchristmas.com/2020/12/23/weird-xmas-flash-fiction-2020-contest-results/. May Stosh persevere.

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Posted : December 17, 2019 1:59 pm
RETreasure
(@rschibler)
Silver Star Member
Posts: 703

Holy crap, I got a personal rejection from F&SF! He said that it didn't win him over in part because he felt that the narrative lost momentum through the middle, but that he wished me best of luck finding the right market for it in the future. Not gonna lie, I'm freaking out a little bit, this is so cool.

Congratulations!

V34: R,HM,R
V35: HM,R,R,HM
V36: R,HM,HM,SHM
V37: HM,SF,SHM,SHM
V38: F, P
Available for critiques - PM for availability.
www.rebeccaetreasure.com

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Posted : December 17, 2019 2:10 pm
SwiftPotato
(@swiftpotato)
Silver Star Member
Posts: 549

Thanks, y'all!

Good job, oishisushi! You just gotta do it sometimes, no matter what nasty things the wee gremlins in your brain say.

R, 3rd place Q4 v36!!!
Stories in Apocalyptic, Cossmass Infinities, and Podcastle

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Posted : December 17, 2019 2:25 pm
Wulf Moon
(@wulfmoon)
Platinum Plus Member Moderator
Posts: 2096

I’ll get to that assignment now. Still need to get my KYD done for this month, too. And I have three full short stories being revised. Haven’t quite decided which to send to WotF. Also, finally submitted something to a paying market! I was kind of down on myself, mentally, and almost didn’t, but pushed that aside, and sent off a flash fiction piece to that market posted earlier, Frozen Wavelets. Good luck to everyone else writing or dealing with other challenges!

RJK Lee: Well done. This is why I set the challenge; this is why you signed up for it. I am aware WotF can feel like a safety net, and many aspiring writers only send stories to this contest. I designed this year's challenge to break that mold, and I am happy to see so many that agreed this would be good for them. Congratulations on pushing yourself to meet the challenge requirements. As you continue to do so, I believe you have taken another important step toward developing your professional writing career. Indeed, it could not happen without taking this step, so well done!

Same is true to all. If you aren't battling serious life issues--and some of you are, we get that--then you have less than two weeks to fulfill your oaths to lord and land! Bah, ram, ewe! To your breed to your fleece to your clan be true! Bah, ram, ewe!

And to Swift--well done, getting your first Charlie. Keep up the skyrocketing progress!

Cheers to all! I owe those of you that qualified those hidden Super Secrets! They will be coming, and might help with your Q1 so hang on!

All the beast!

Beastmaster Moon

JOIN THE WULF PACK! http://the super secrets.com
"Super-Duper Moongirl and the Amazing Moon Dawdler" wins WRITERS OF THE FUTURE VOL. 35 & BEST SF&F STORY OF 2019. Order WotF Volume 35 HERE!
“Muzik Man" wins BEST SF&F STORY of 2020
NEW! Don't miss "Shaken, Not Stirred" & "Behind the Scenes" & "Nail Your Opening" in DreamForge Anvil Magazine!
JUST RELEASED! BEST OF DEEP MAGIC ANTHOLOGY TWO! Three Super Secrets Workshop members made it into this best of the best anthology! KD Julicher, Brittany Rainsdon, and some guy named Wulf Moon.Click HERE to get yours!

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Topic starter Posted : December 18, 2019 5:50 am
Henckel
(@henckel)
Silver Member
Posts: 402

My Q3 submission (Magician's Midlife Crisis) was just accepted by SciF Lampoon magazine. Woo! Hoo!

It's not a paying market, but it's nice to find this story a home--especially one that will be released in print.

This will be my third publication... and the crazy thing is that all three have been humorous SciFi/Fantasy stories that take place in the old west.

(2014) V31 Q1 – R
(2018) V35 Q3 – HM
(2019) V36 Q3 – HM
(2019) V36 Q4 – SHM
(2020) V37 Q1 – R
(2020) V37 Q2 – HM
(2020) V37 Q3 – SHM
(2020) V37 Q4 – Finalist
(2021) V38 Q1 – Semi-finalist
(2021) V38 Q2 – tba

Publications
2019 Writing Bloc Cooperative – Escape Anthology
2020 Sci-Fi Lampoon – Winter 2020 Issue

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Posted : December 18, 2019 8:22 am
SwiftPotato
(@swiftpotato)
Silver Star Member
Posts: 549

Congrats, Henckel!!!

R, 3rd place Q4 v36!!!
Stories in Apocalyptic, Cossmass Infinities, and Podcastle

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Posted : December 18, 2019 8:31 am
CCrawford
(@ccrawford)
Bronze Star Member
Posts: 207

My Q3 submission (Magician's Midlife Crisis) was just accepted by SciF Lampoon magazine. Woo! Hoo!

It's not a paying market, but it's nice to find this story a home--especially one that will be released in print.

This will be my third publication... and the crazy thing is that all three have been humorous SciFi/Fantasy stories that take place in the old west.

Congratulations!

v35: Q4 - HM
V36: R, R, R, R
V37: SHM, HM, HM, SHM
V38: SHM, ??
Indie author of The Lex Chronicles (Legends of Arameth), and the upcoming Leyward Stones series. http://ccrawfordwriting.com
I also have a newsletter and a blog!
Upcoming short story publication in DreamForge Anvil, sometime in 2021!

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Posted : December 18, 2019 8:35 am
Peter_Glen
(@peter_glen)
Bronze Star Member
Posts: 143

The discussion here on priority etc has hit me at the right time. Not making excuses, but when I enter edit mode, I seem to lose writing momentum. so have not reached any of my writing goals for the past couple of weeks 🙁 A couple of writing days before the end of the month will get things back on track Smile
ASSIGNMENT: Going Pro

1. What lesson did David learn about the path to success?
There are many routes to the final goal and you must find your own and make it work.

2. What advice--and you might have heard this before somewhere :)--did he give about researching your markets?
Know your markets!

3. How can you apply that advice to the WotF contest?
This question is great timing!!! I just purchased a set of WotF volumes (7 pack). TY to Ellen Alesso from Galaxy Press. Ellen went out of her way to help me find a shipping option to Australia that would work.

4. How did Dave struggle for excellence in his writing? (Please ignore the paper and cologne stuff--that world is gone.)
Checklist of 40 items. Based on this have generated my list made up of advice from the super secrets and elsewhere. Figure that I'll be able to apply the list to other stories and improve my ability to critique other's work also.

5. What advice did he give about seizing opportunities? How does this relate to a change I did in this year's challenge?
Grab them while you can. This year moving out to other markets and using the prompt as an opportunity to generate new ideas (Um, I had to cheat on the second part, thanks Swift and Retro 😉

6. How does our subconscious speak to us? Also, while not in the essay, how can we get our subconscious to speak to us without sleeping?
By following our dreams. I'm thinking about the stories I'm writing all of the time; perhaps the subconscious carries on the thinking so that, the next time that we engage in active thought, the ideas may have matured or developed further. (do breakthrough ideas come out of the blue, or are they an extension of some subconscious thought process?) <-- er, just a theory

7. Why is it good to dream big, but not spend all our time dreaming?
A strong imagination makes for powerful and powerfully distracting daydreams.

8. When you start making money in writing, according to Dave (and Moon!) what do you want to do with it?
I'm going to invest in the editing of my first novel.

9. When we write a novel, do we desperately send it to anyone who handed us their card? Just like with our short stories, what do we want to do?
This ties in with research... find markets that will be interested in the genre/themes/style of your work.

10. How can you target a good agent? In sales, my objective was always to get face to face with the decision-maker, never take no from their gatekeepers. With big agents, face to face is just as important. How can you make that happen? (Again, don't look for this in the essay.)
Find innovative ways to get in front of the people that matter. I like the quote from the article "we're all in the same business" as it puts a lot of this particular topic into perspective.

11. How can you become a "proven author" so that publishers will take your career and novel seriously?
Blow their socks off.

12. Why is winning Writers of the Future such an important step in this process if you achieve it?
You have impressed a group of proven authors.

13. How else can you make yourself into a "proven author"?
Push boundaries.

14. Why is it really important to have some noteworthy credits before you pursue an agent or publishing house with your novel?
First impressions are important. These credits are your first impression. They also show that you can deliver a story (or three).

15. What writing goals did David set for his first novel? What did he do with each scene?
He wanted depth in his story. So wrote to the best of his ability to produce his best work.

16. What does every writer have? Why is it good to have a wise reader?
A wise reader (just a guess). They are unable to fill in the gaps that you, as the author, may have.

17. What are readers and publishers always looking for? How should you capitalize on this with your very first novel?
They are looking for something 'better'. Make it a fresh work from a fresh writer.

18. True or False. To have a successful writing career, all you need to do is write. Explain.
False. You need to write, but you also need to write well and write for your market.

19. Which of David Farland's "Lessons Learned" hit home for you?
I think that David Farland's quest for excellence is what resonates most for me from the article.

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Posted : December 18, 2019 10:04 am
Peter_Glen
(@peter_glen)
Bronze Star Member
Posts: 143

My Q3 submission (Magician's Midlife Crisis) was just accepted by SciF Lampoon magazine. Woo! Hoo!

Wowzers! Good one!! Grats!!! wotf010

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Posted : December 18, 2019 10:05 am
einstein36
(@einstein36)
Bronze Member
Posts: 69

My Q3 submission (Magician's Midlife Crisis) was just accepted by SciF Lampoon magazine. Woo! Hoo!

It's not a paying market, but it's nice to find this story a home--especially one that will be released in print.

This will be my third publication... and the crazy thing is that all three have been humorous SciFi/Fantasy stories that take place in the old west.

Congrats...That's awesome....You are a published author. Your name is now out there and editors and publishers will recognize you now.

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Posted : December 18, 2019 11:31 am
Retropianoplayer
(@retropianoplayer)
Bronze Star Member
Posts: 224

Congratulations, Henckel, on your upcoming publication in the science fiction lampoon magazine!

Being your third, this shows you exhibit special talent in crafting stories of the Old West, and the editors appreciate your sense of humor.

Maybe one of these, combined with the Super Secrets, can put you over the top and onto that stage.

Best of luck,

Retro wotf009

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Posted : December 18, 2019 11:55 am
rjklee
(@rjklee)
Bronze Star Member
Posts: 172

ASSIGNMENT on Farland’s "Going Pro."

1. What lesson did David learn about the path to success?
That there are many paths to success.
That you must create your own path no matter how unusual or crazy it may be.

2. What advice--and you might have heard this before somewhere :)--did he give about researching your markets?
Research judges or editors, and the works submitted in the past, to figure out what they value and what you could employ in your own writing to catch their attention.

3. How can you apply that advice to the WotF contest?
Read past stories and check out what the judges are reading or have written. Check out their newsletters and classes for further guidance. Consider if your stories would fit with their particular interests or if there is anything you should tweak in your stories to stand out with the readers and judges.

4. How did Dave struggle for excellence in his writing? (Please ignore the paper and cologne stuff--that world is gone.)
He wrote up a list of about 40 categories that could impress readers (hooks, plot, pacing, characterization, metaphors, depth, resonance, ending, etc.) and judged how well his own work performed in each category. “No one wants your second-best effort.”

5. What advice did he give about seizing opportunities? How does this relate to a change I did in this year's challenge?
There are opportunities all around you. Go for the good ones while you still can.

6. How does our subconscious speak to us? Also, while not in the essay, how can we get our subconscious to speak to us without sleeping?

Some say our subconscious speaks to us in our dreams, but some of us don’t dream much or have fleeting snippets of limited use. Better, I say, is free writing session. As soon as you wake, jot notes, some say, but again, I can only partially agree, as often you must rush off to a job or other responsibilities when you wake. You want to slip away from the reality of the world around you to focus on your subconscious and to do so there are countless methods, but anything that allows you to meditate and shield yourself from distractions. My methods probably wouldn’t work for you. One is the train, with a device or notepad, both a white sheet I can focus on until the train fades into nothing but white noise and the words are running across the page revealing what dreams and nightmares intrigue my subconscious. Other methods: a hot drink and a cozy chair or couch, a timer and and a pen, the dark of night in a corner of the house where no one will bother you, a few prompts related to where you want your subconscious to focus. Also, lots of random moments when you need a device or notepad on you to jot down messages from the subconscious before they’re gone—keep a running list and the contents can prompt future work.

7. Why is it good to dream big, but not spend all our time dreaming?
If you only dream, you won’t act, and if you don’t act, you’ll likely never see any of the fruits of your dreaming. Also, reality is often harsher than our dreams. We have to confront reality to struggle through real challenges to find success.

8. When you start making money in writing, according to Dave (and Moon!) what do you want to do with it?
Invest it in your writing (new keyboard/computer, workshops, books, subscriptions, writing retreat, etc.).

9. When we write a novel, do we desperately send it to anyone who handed us their card? Just like with our short stories, what do we want to do?
Research and consider your best options. Make a list of what you want and who can most likely provide.

10. How can you target a good agent? In sales, my objective was always to get a face to face with the decision maker, never take no from their gatekeepers. With big agents, face to face is just as important. How can you make that happen? (Again, don't look for this in the essay.)
Making friends and contacts, and asking those contacts for help as you get to know them better. Use your research to consider the best approach in reaching out to agents. Attend a conference where the agent is in attendance. The one time I attended a conference, I was surprised how easily you could meet writers and agents. Cold calls to set up a meeting may also work, as suggested in the essay.

11. How can you become a "proven author" so that publishers will take your career and novel seriously?
Winning awards, publishing in several markets, publishing novels with others.

12. Why is winning Writers of the Future such an important step in this process if you achieve it?
It’s widely recognized, it opens doors, it gets you further training, it gets you in conversation with successful writers.

13. How else can you make yourself into a "proven author"?
By writing top quality excellence.
By putting in the time and effort, the millions of words, the studying and research, then engaging with other serious writers and attending conferences, I think you would give yourself more opportunity to reach out to agents and publishers. But I suppose you could use such efforts and take a more indie route by building an audience independently through newsletters, serial stories, and publishing solid work on Amazon, but you’d really have to push your marketing and have solid works to succeed.

14. Why is it really important to have some noteworthy credits before you pursue an agent or publishing house with your novel?
You want to stand out from the get-go. More likely to draw the interest of agents and publishers you want to work with. It will help them to sell your work. Can more easily stand your ground on presenting your work in the manner you like.

15. What writing goals did David set for his first novel? What did he do with each scene?
Make it deep, powerful, and strive for excellence in every category (plot, pacing, character, etc.). He made each scene as engrossing as possible and wrote to the best of his ability.

16. What does every writer have? Why is it good to have a wise reader?
Instincts. Wizardy. Tenacity. Words.
And most especially, blindspots.
A wise reader can help alert you to those weak areas you need to fix up. A writer should keep a list of blind spots to check for as they revise.

17. What are readers and publishers always looking for? How should you capitalize on this with your very first novel?
New authors to discover. Write at your best. Use it to build your audience.

18. True or False. To have a successful writing career, all you need to do is write. Explain.
No. You also need to reach out for opportunities and to get your work seen.

19. Which of David Farland's "Lessons Learned" hit home for you?
There are opportunities everywhere and I really need to work to have a better chance at snagging them. I have a lot of work done that I should be using to build up some credentials, and I should be pushing my new creations out into the world as well.

R.J.K. Lee
WotF 2015-present: HMx6 SHMx1
My blog has monthly lists of upcoming deadlines and submission windows; let them motivate you to be more productive: https://figmentsdiehard.blogspot.com/
Give a listen to my creepy reading of my original flash fiction piece on the December 2020 episode of the Weird Christmas Podcast at the 22:10 mark: https://weirdchristmas.com/2020/12/23/weird-xmas-flash-fiction-2020-contest-results/. May Stosh persevere.

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Posted : December 18, 2019 2:46 pm
rjklee
(@rjklee)
Bronze Star Member
Posts: 172

This will be my third publication... and the crazy thing is that all three have been humorous SciFi/Fantasy stories that take place in the old west.

Good job successfully submitting your work! That Q3 submission must be happy to have a place to be read. Keep it up. Being able to write good humor will certainly help you stand out.

R.J.K. Lee
WotF 2015-present: HMx6 SHMx1
My blog has monthly lists of upcoming deadlines and submission windows; let them motivate you to be more productive: https://figmentsdiehard.blogspot.com/
Give a listen to my creepy reading of my original flash fiction piece on the December 2020 episode of the Weird Christmas Podcast at the 22:10 mark: https://weirdchristmas.com/2020/12/23/weird-xmas-flash-fiction-2020-contest-results/. May Stosh persevere.

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Posted : December 18, 2019 3:29 pm
Henckel
(@henckel)
Silver Member
Posts: 402

Thanks everyone! I really have to credit Wulf's lesson "release your krakens". Otherwise the story would still be festering on my digital shelf.

Now I need to get back to my Q1 sub. I still have a long way to go.

(2014) V31 Q1 – R
(2018) V35 Q3 – HM
(2019) V36 Q3 – HM
(2019) V36 Q4 – SHM
(2020) V37 Q1 – R
(2020) V37 Q2 – HM
(2020) V37 Q3 – SHM
(2020) V37 Q4 – Finalist
(2021) V38 Q1 – Semi-finalist
(2021) V38 Q2 – tba

Publications
2019 Writing Bloc Cooperative – Escape Anthology
2020 Sci-Fi Lampoon – Winter 2020 Issue

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Posted : December 18, 2019 4:49 pm
rjklee
(@rjklee)
Bronze Star Member
Posts: 172

Henckel, I noticed your success (!) on The Grinder: Acceptance from SciFi Lampoon (59 days) (Congratulations Henckel!)

Wulf, thank you for the bit of encouragement in regards to my having submitted a piece to Frozen Wavelets. I did try submitting stories beyond WotF a few years ago, but only a few (Lightspeed, Nightmare, Tor.com, Phantom Drift), and after a few tries, I didn’t continue. I made a similar mistake after the writer’s conference I went to. Didn’t follow up and submit my novel samples.

So coupled with the underlying sense of fleeting failure it feels much too long since I tried to submit (outside of WotF). This challenge, and seeing the motivation and successes within this group) has been a major motivating factor.

I am planning to submit regularly after this little flash step and the Q1 submission for WotF (sending out previous HMs and the newer short stories and flash). In light of the recent assignment (don’t only dream and get excited, actually do it), I will actually do it.

R.J.K. Lee
WotF 2015-present: HMx6 SHMx1
My blog has monthly lists of upcoming deadlines and submission windows; let them motivate you to be more productive: https://figmentsdiehard.blogspot.com/
Give a listen to my creepy reading of my original flash fiction piece on the December 2020 episode of the Weird Christmas Podcast at the 22:10 mark: https://weirdchristmas.com/2020/12/23/weird-xmas-flash-fiction-2020-contest-results/. May Stosh persevere.

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Posted : December 18, 2019 6:18 pm
Disgruntled Peony
(@disgruntledpeony)
Gold Star Member
Posts: 1058

I am planning to submit regularly after this little flash step and the Q1 submission for WotF (sending out previous HMs and the newer short stories and flash). In light of the recent assignment (don’t only dream and get excited, actually do it), I will actually do it.

This is great to hear, but I would like to make one caveat suggestion. I'd recommend sending out, not just your HMs, but everything. Might be good to give older stories, especially Rs, a once-over before releasing the kraken, but still.

The principle reason I recommend this is because, of my two story sales, one never actually made it to WotF because it was explicitly written for a Flame Tree anthology and the other was a revised version of an R.

My first Finalist never sold (and believe me, I tried); my second one is currently making the rounds, and has received R's from four pro magazines thus far. None of my HMs have sold. Neither have my SHMs. Neither has my SF.

I'm not telling you this to discourage you; other people have had very different luck than me when it comes to submissions. I'm telling you this to help illustrate that we never know where our stories might sell, or which ones might sell, until we send them out.

If you are in difficulties with a book, try the element of surprise: attack it at an hour when it isn't expecting it. ~ H.G. Wells
R, SF, SHM, SHM, SHM, F, R, HM, SHM, R, HM, R, F, SHM, SHM, SHM, SF, SHM, ?, ?
Ticknor Tales

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Posted : December 18, 2019 9:44 pm
storysinger
(@storysinger)
Gold Member
Posts: 814

Congratulations on finding a home for your kraken Henckel. wotf010

Today's science fiction is tomorrow's reality-D.R.Sweeney
HM-V32/Q3
HM-V36/Q4
HM-V38/Q1

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Posted : December 18, 2019 11:11 pm
crlisle
(@crlisle)
Bronze Star Member
Posts: 212

My Q3 submission (Magician's Midlife Crisis) was just accepted by SciF Lampoon magazine. Woo! Hoo!

It's not a paying market, but it's nice to find this story a home--especially one that will be released in print.

This will be my third publication... and the crazy thing is that all three have been humorous SciFi/Fantasy stories that take place in the old west.

Congratulations! I just submitted a humorous flash story about a time traveler to SciFi Lampoon magazine. Thank you for telling us about this! You've got me all excited now. I went there to read your story, but I saw that they won't publish until they have enough stories. I hope they accept mine, because I really want to read Magician's Midlife Crisis! Come on people, everyone submit to them so we can read Henckel's story!

2020 Quarters: 1st -- R, 2nd -- HM, 3rd -- HM, 4th -- SHM
2021 Quarters: 1st -- HM, 2nd -- Pending
"The Last Dance" to be published Feb. 2022 in the LTUE Anthology, Parliament of Wizards
"Never give up. Never surrender." - Galaxy Quest

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Posted : December 19, 2019 12:13 am
storysinger
(@storysinger)
Gold Member
Posts: 814

In the process of Going Pro
1. What lesson did David learn about the path to success?
Take the time to research the contest or magazine you plan to submit to.

2. What advice--and you might have heard this before somewhere :)--did he give about researching your markets?
Don't sit around waiting, send your stories early and often.

3. How can you apply that advice to the WotF contest?
Be persistent, write fresh and sub in every quarter.

4. How did Dave struggle for excellence in his writing? (Please ignore the paper and cologne stuff--that world is gone.)
He had to learn the path to success on his own.

5. What advice did he give about seizing opportunities? How does this relate to a change I did in this year's challenge?
Submit to more than one market.

6. How does our subconscious speak to us? Also, while not in the essay, how can we get our subconscious to speak to us without sleeping?
If one writes enough they learn to zone into the moment.

7. Why is it good to dream big, but not spend all our time dreaming?
Dreaming is fun but it won't advance your career or make you money.

8. When you start making money in writing, according to Dave (and Moon!) what do you want to do with it?
Put it back into your writing process.

9. When we write a novel, do we desperately send it to anyone who handed us their card? Just like with our short stories, what do we want to do?
Research the market you intend to approach, the bookseller, editor, and agent.

10. How can you target a good agent? In sales, my objective was always to get a face to face with the decision maker, never take no from their gatekeepers. With big agents, face to face is just as important. How can you make that happen? (Again, don't look for this in the essay.)
Take time to go to workshops and conventions that emphasize writer's contributions.

11. How can you become a "proven author" so that publishers will take your career and novel seriously?
Be persistent. Submit and repeat until you have something to put on your cover page.

12. Why is winning Writers of the Future such an important step in this process if you achieve it?
Winning WoTF shines a spotlight on your accomplishment and can open many doors in the process.

13. How else can you make yourself into a "proven author"?
Work at it every day you can. The more you practice your craft the better you write.

14. Why is it really important to have some noteworthy credits before you pursue an agent or publishing house with your novel?
They want new authors that write well to help their bottom line. Your credits show your level of commitment.

15. What writing goals did David set for his first novel? What did he do with each scene?
He made each scene engrossing to him.

16. What does every writer have? Why is it good to have a wise reader?
A voice. It's hard to be perfect all the time so an extra set of eyes can see things differently than the writer.

17. What are readers and publishers always looking for? How should you capitalize on this with your very first novel?
Entertainment! Engaging stories that transport the reader to another world. A can't wait to turn the page experience.

18. True or False. To have a successful writing career, all you need to do is write. Explain.
False. To be successful it will take a lot of work. You have to learn to sell yourself.

19. Which of David Farland's "Lessons Learned" hit home for you?
Struggle for excellence, no one wants your second best.

Today's science fiction is tomorrow's reality-D.R.Sweeney
HM-V32/Q3
HM-V36/Q4
HM-V38/Q1

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Posted : December 19, 2019 1:55 am
officer
(@officer)
Bronze Star Member
Posts: 106

I'm telling you this to help illustrate that we never know where our stories might sell, or which ones might sell, until we send them out.

Some proof on this, though without a sale: I posted here a few days ago that my second story of the quarter was inferior to the first. I submitted both to F&SF. The first got a short semi-personal rejection (my HM got a form rejection), and the second just got a fairly detailed response with specific suggestions, encouraging me to send Charlie my next new story (versus a more general "keeping them in mind in the future"). So he clearly liked that one better - the one I thought was worse. I made some edits based on his comments and submitted on, encouraged!

I would have scrapped this piece absent my Wulf pack commitment. In fact, I only made it work in the end thanks to the Super Secrets! The other one is better in my mind, but everyone has different preferences. You never know until you submit.

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Posted : December 19, 2019 4:49 am
RETreasure
(@rschibler)
Silver Star Member
Posts: 703

ASSIGNMENT:

Before the next SUPER SECRET, it's time to study another writer's path to success in HOW I GOT PUBLISHED AND WHAT I LEARNED ALONG THE WAY. You might have heard of him, his name is David Farland. His essay is "Going Pro."

1. What lesson did David learn about the path to success?
Having a successful career requires more than writing.
2. What advice--and you might have heard this before somewhere :)--did he give about researching your markets?
Research your markets - aim your arrows at targets they're suited for.
3. How can you apply that advice to the WotF contest?
Research Dave and Kary, to sharpen our pens to prick them
4. How did Dave struggle for excellence in his writing? (Please ignore the paper and cologne stuff--that world is gone.)
He wrote a list of ways the judges might critique his work, and aimed to check all the boxes. Side note: I do something similar with Dave. He wrote a blog about the 7 things he looks for in a story, and I check my stories against it before submitting.
5. What advice did he give about seizing opportunities? How does this relate to a change I did in this year's challenge?
Don't wait for the golden goose. Seize the opportunities that are available.
6. How does our subconscious speak to us? Also, while not in the essay, how can we get our subconscious to speak to us without sleeping?
Get in the zone of writing regularly, let yourself be quiet and calm and trust your ideas when they come.
7. Why is it good to dream big, but not spend all our time dreaming?
A dream without action is meaningless. If we get carried away daydreaming about how awesome our writing someday will be, it won't be.
8. When you start making money in writing, according to Dave (and Moon!) what do you want to do with it?
Invest it in yourself and your writing.
9. When we write a novel, do we desperately send it to anyone who handed us their card? Just like with our short stories, what do we want to do?
Research your markets, find a good agent.
10. How can you target a good agent? In sales, my objective was always to get a face to face with the decision maker, never take no from their gatekeepers. With big agents, face to face is just as important. How can you make that happen? (Again, don't look for this in the essay.)
Attend conferences where they'll be in attendance. I would recommend against coldcalling - that's outdated advice according to everything I've read and learned about publishing. They're just too dang busy. But target your dream agents.
11. How can you become a "proven author" so that publishers will take your career and novel seriously?
Winning contests, selling short stories, etc.
12. Why is winning Writers of the Future such an important step in this process if you achieve it?
It's a huge credit, demonstrating the level of your writing.
13. How else can you make yourself into a "proven author"?
Establishing a short story career.
14. Why is it really important to have some noteworthy credits before you pursue an agent or publishing house with your novel?
Because they're inundated with novice writers looking to debut. Make yourself stand out.
15. What writing goals did David set for his first novel? What did he do with each scene?
Dude is serious about his prepping. Writing a review for his novel before writing the novel is a great strategy. He wrote each scene to the best of his ability.
16. What does every writer have? Why is it good to have a wise reader?
Blind spots, and you need a reader to point them out.
17. What are readers and publishers always looking for? How should you capitalize on this with your very first novel?
Great writers with staying power. Hmm, I'm not sure about how to do it with the first novel, but Dave said to make your second novel even better.
18. True or False. To have a successful writing career, all you need to do is write. Explain.
False. Marketing, networking, career development are all elements of a writing career.
19. Which of David Farland's "Lessons Learned" hit home for you?

Your goal as a writer is to oblige the reader. Or as King put it, write with the door closed, edit with the door open.

Sorry this took so long, December is CRAZY around here.

V34: R,HM,R
V35: HM,R,R,HM
V36: R,HM,HM,SHM
V37: HM,SF,SHM,SHM
V38: F, P
Available for critiques - PM for availability.
www.rebeccaetreasure.com

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Posted : December 19, 2019 10:22 am
rjklee
(@rjklee)
Bronze Star Member
Posts: 172

I am planning to submit regularly after this little flash step and the Q1 submission for WotF (sending out previous HMs and the newer short stories and flash). In light of the recent assignment (don’t only dream and get excited, actually do it), I will actually do it.

This is great to hear, but I would like to make one caveat suggestion. I'd recommend sending out, not just your HMs, but everything. Might be good to give older stories, especially Rs, a once-over before releasing the kraken, but still.

The principle reason I recommend this is because, of my two story sales, one never actually made it to WotF because it was explicitly written for a Flame Tree anthology and the other was a revised version of an R.

My first Finalist never sold (and believe me, I tried); my second one is currently making the rounds, and has received R's from four pro magazines thus far. None of my HMs have sold. Neither have my SHMs. Neither has my SF.

I'm not telling you this to discourage you; other people have had very different luck than me when it comes to submissions. I'm telling you this to help illustrate that we never know where our stories might sell, or which ones might sell, until we send them out.

Thanks for the reply. Pretty interesting how that goes with an R finding a home, while the HMs, SHMs, and F have not had any luck. I hope some of those stories make it out into the public in some form eventually.

That your R and not-for-WotF story found homes is actually encouraging for me, not discouraging. I mean, I do have more Rs than HMs. That might be the nudge I need to get into the regular submissions mindset (once I give each piece a look over and possible revision). Plus, it always bothers me that I have these older stories just sitting around, so I would be excited to fit in time to revise and send them out, while also producing new material. Time to get pumped for a busy 2020. As if 2019 wasn’t busy enough.

R.J.K. Lee
WotF 2015-present: HMx6 SHMx1
My blog has monthly lists of upcoming deadlines and submission windows; let them motivate you to be more productive: https://figmentsdiehard.blogspot.com/
Give a listen to my creepy reading of my original flash fiction piece on the December 2020 episode of the Weird Christmas Podcast at the 22:10 mark: https://weirdchristmas.com/2020/12/23/weird-xmas-flash-fiction-2020-contest-results/. May Stosh persevere.

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Posted : December 19, 2019 12:31 pm
Disgruntled Peony
(@disgruntledpeony)
Gold Star Member
Posts: 1058

Thanks for the reply. Pretty interesting how that goes with an R finding a home, while the HMs, SHMs, and F have not had any luck. I hope some of those stories make it out into the public in some form eventually.

That your R and not-for-WotF story found homes is actually encouraging for me, not discouraging. I mean, I do have more Rs than HMs. That might be the nudge I need to get into the regular submissions mindset (once I give each piece a look over and possible revision). Plus, it always bothers me that I have these older stories just sitting around, so I would be excited to fit in time to revise and send them out, while also producing new material. Time to get pumped for a busy 2020. As if 2019 wasn’t busy enough.

About half of my stories are old enough/have been around the block enough that they've exhausted all of the regularly open pro markets they qualify for. I may decide to put some of them on my website eventually--but that means definitively trunking them, which is a hard decision to make.

Glad to hear I helped. wotf007 (I wouldn't have sold my R without revision, but the revision was well worth it in that case.) Go go go go go go go!

If you are in difficulties with a book, try the element of surprise: attack it at an hour when it isn't expecting it. ~ H.G. Wells
R, SF, SHM, SHM, SHM, F, R, HM, SHM, R, HM, R, F, SHM, SHM, SHM, SF, SHM, ?, ?
Ticknor Tales

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Posted : December 19, 2019 2:20 pm
RETreasure
(@rschibler)
Silver Star Member
Posts: 703

Moon’s SUPER SECRET #37: Aim Your Baby Kraken at a Ship it Can Take Down!
Copyright 2019 by Wulf Moon

News Flash! There are many magazines and anthologies that are like off-Broadway productions, just around the block from Big Name Publisher. Many even pay pro rate, they just don’t have the volume of subscribers to meet the SFWA criteria yet. Or maybe they haven’t been in business the minimum one year yet, but they’ve got everything else going for them. And there are many others that are close, but can’t afford to pay eight cents a word. Should a new writer turn their noses up at them? Are these markets beneath a new writer? Depends on how low you go. But many are right up there, right around the block from that famous Broadway theater. Getting a gig with them and landing your story on their stage not only gives you an ego boost, it gets you a credit on your cover letters, it gets your story an audience, and it makes you money.

These aren’t skid row productions. Your stories aren’t busking on some street corner, begging for handouts. They are established markets. They pay real money. You can actually see your words in print and get paid while you’re apprenticing until you land that big role. You also build up your credentials. Editors see you are selling to their friends. They know these names you list in your cover letters. You get lifted out of the slush--called back, so to speak, for a second audition. This is a good place for a new writer to be.

By thinking outside of the box, by adjusting your marketing strategy just a little, you could end up holding the proof you were not crazy creating all those baby krakens. You could be proud papa saying, "Looky, looky here, folks! My baby kraken just snagged his first ship!"

Just a reminder to vet markets carefully before submitting. Semi-pro markets, such as the many listed by SwiftPotato and Wulf, are professional, reputable, and established publications. We've worked hard on these stories, and they're good stories. We want to develop our careers, increase our chances of becoming professional writers. Not all markets are equal, and we are in the end captains of our own careers and must make our own decisions. We all want our names in print, or we wouldn't be here, but we should make careful decisions before sending out stories to places that might not benefit our career in the long term.

V34: R,HM,R
V35: HM,R,R,HM
V36: R,HM,HM,SHM
V37: HM,SF,SHM,SHM
V38: F, P
Available for critiques - PM for availability.
www.rebeccaetreasure.com

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Posted : December 20, 2019 2:04 am
officer
(@officer)
Bronze Star Member
Posts: 106

Just a reminder to vet markets carefully before submitting. Semi-pro markets, such as the many listed by SwiftPotato and Wulf, are professional, reputable, and established publications. We've worked hard on these stories, and they're good stories. We want to develop our careers, increase our chances of becoming professional writers. Not all markets are equal, and we are in the end captains of our own careers and must make our own decisions. We all want our names in print, or we wouldn't be here, but we should make careful decisions before sending out stories to places that might not benefit our career in the long term.

Along those lines, if you make a sale to a less established market, read the contract carefully (which you should do anyway). There's been advice on this forum to pull your submission in the face of overreaching contracts, but I would recommend first asking them to delete any part you don't feel comfortable with that isn't standard. Worst case, they say no and you have the same decision to make. SFWA has a sample contract posted: https://www.sfwa.org/member-links/commi ... rsion-3-1/

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Posted : December 20, 2019 3:20 am
crlisle
(@crlisle)
Bronze Star Member
Posts: 212

I just finished reading Tracy Cooper-Posey's article "How to Cut 77 Years Off Your Road to Success" in HOW I GOT PUBLISHED AND WHAT I LEARNED ALONG THE WAY. Creating an email list of readers was so financially successful she quit her day job in less than a year! Her advice about not switching genres is spot on. I highly recommend her article.

2020 Quarters: 1st -- R, 2nd -- HM, 3rd -- HM, 4th -- SHM
2021 Quarters: 1st -- HM, 2nd -- Pending
"The Last Dance" to be published Feb. 2022 in the LTUE Anthology, Parliament of Wizards
"Never give up. Never surrender." - Galaxy Quest

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Posted : December 20, 2019 7:01 am
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