It’s been busy here. I’m tying up loose ends with the day job and around the house. I’m just two days away from an overdue family vacation in Tampa. I will be out of town for a week so expect me to be quiet on the LJ front. I’ll have my laptop with me, but other than going through some submissions to SFW (if I have a spare moment — doubtful) and responding to some emails, I don’t plan on doing much with it except using it for DVD’s and music. The focus will be on family (and this is a lot of family: my parents, sisters, and their families in addition to my own). I’m looking forward to some sun, swimming, reading (for fun), the occasional beer, and seafood. We’re also taking an excursion to Disney World for a day which should be fun. I know my kids will enjoy it, especially the 5-yr old. He’s hyped up about the Pirates of the Caribbean and wants to see Buzz Lightyear really bad.
Regarding submissions to Southern Fried Weirdness: I only have one submission over a month old. The majority of the others are from within the last two weeks. If you submitted something prior to May 12th and have not heard from me, please query because I never received your work.
On the writing front I need some suggestions for placing a story. Does anyone have a suggestion for where to send a roughly 6500-word gothic family/crime drama set in a farmhouse during a Great Depression-era dust storm? I was thinking somewhere like Ploughshares, but I have a story that’s been pending with them a few months now and submissions are closed.
Also on the writing front, rejections have hit hard and fast lately…. I was placing around a piece a month for a while there, but since I decided to only submit to paying markets (with the odd exception made for a market where I believe in what they are doing and/or respect the editor) my statistics have taken a nosedive. I’m getting mostly personal and mostly positive responses from all sorts of places with requests for more so I think I’m on the right track. I guess its just a matter of persevering, reworking when necessary, submitting to the next market, and trying to write a better piece each time I open up a new blank document.
Another writing thought… My writing seems all over the place these days — a literary story here, a horror (or dark … and I mean dark … fantasy) story there, a surrealist piece here, a formal sporting essay there, a Cheech & Chong buddy comedy here, and a science fiction piece there — I worry I am suffering a writer-exclusive form of schizophrenia. Does anyone else feel this way? I have a style I definitely feel most comfortable in (Southern Gothic/ modern rural fantasy), and can slip into this like a glove, but I really enjoy writing …well… anything and I enjoy extending myself into new genres and archetypes. I think that is why I enjoy writing short fiction and poetry so much (it’s definitely not for the money as I’m sure everyone knows). You have the freedom to experiment with different tones, styles, and voices — if it doesn’t work, you’re only tossing out a few hours and a couple thousand words of work instead of tens of thousands if you’re working a novel. I’ve been having fun successfully putting together a story a week for the last two months now. But that said, after I come back from vacation I will put myself back into novel mode and start the last book in the trilogy I’ve been putting off — and I mean it this time…