Archive | November, 2011

Witch’s Familiar and Wormhole Electric

18 Nov

After much editorial feedback and revision, Wormhole Electric (wormholeelectric.com) will publish my fantasy novella Witch’s Familiar in serial e-book form, beginning November 25.

The way Wormhole Electric works is this: you can read the first couple of chapters online, at http://wormholeelectric.com/Readingroom.html, and after that, if you want to continue reading the novella you purchase the e-book. So please support not-so-famous science fiction and fantasy authors by visiting the Wormhole Electric site.

Meanwhile, my attempts at starting a writers critique group proved to be about as productive as herding cats, but I’m about to join a writers critique group, so I can give and take developmental feedback on fiction. I may be a slacker when it comes to job hunting, but at least my writing career is seeing progress.

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Writing Background

8 Nov

The following is the original version of my essay that I submitted to Portland State University in 2008, when I was applying for the graduate publishing program. The essay I actually sent didn’t include the stuff from my childhood (fortunately).

I have a B.A. in creative writing from Webster University in St. Louis, Missouri, and since graduating I have continued to write many poems, stories, and essays. Almost a year after graduating, I returned to St. Louis and participated in a writer’s group. My story “Institute of the Dead” appeared in Aphelion Webzine, and “Havisham,” another story, appeared in the online magazine Augustcutter.com. Some of my poems have been published in The Midwest PoetryReview, The Green Fuse, The Circle, Salamander, Windows to Women, and Words Unlimited. At Archon in St. Louis, I once participated in Mickey Zucher Reichert’s fiction writing workshop.

When I was seven years old, I told my brother that I wanted to write a book. He sneeringly claimed that I couldn’t write a book and that I didn’t have a big enough vocabulary, and he demanded that I tell him every single word that I knew. I did not begin writing till I was eleven years old, and at first, except for a few poems, I focused on little books based on characters I made up while playing with a homemade dollhouse. When I was sixteen years old, the first person to tell me that I have a talent for writing was an English teacher, Pam Downard. She praised my writing assignments and published a couple of them in the school paper. After that, I regularly submitted short stories and occasionally poems to the school paper. I also wrote a young adult fantasy novel between the ages of sixteen and nineteen; in more recent years, I have revised and expanded that novel and am currently attempting to find an agent for it.             I mostly think of myself as a fiction and fantasy writer, but while dwelling in the rather alienating environment of Kansas I was compelled to write journals and create blogs. I was also compelled to travel and to write travel journals. During my first trip to India, a Buddhist pilgrimage, I was inspired to write a novel-like five hundred page travel memoir, excerpts of which are on my travel blog http://www.stumblingaroundthirdplanet.blogspot.com. I currently have countless ideas for short stories and am working on an autobiographical fantasy novel about my experience in Kansas.

Progress

7 Nov

I’m about to get a poem and a novella published, am working on a couple of completely new stories, and just printed out four poems to send the
Clackamas Literary Review. This is not “unemployment.”

More specifically, on November 15 my poem “Outdated Fliers” will be published in Four and  Twenty Poetry (4and20poetry.com). I’ve already mentioned the novella on this blog, so I won’t go on about that now; later, yes.

So Much to Write and Revise

3 Nov

Before registering with NaNoWriMo, I should have considered that I might have another edit coming from Wormhole Electric. Sure enough, it came yesterday, so I’ll be working on a third edit on my novella Witch’s Familiar, which will be published in Wormhole Electric on November
25 (or rather, the first episode of seven, since they publish in serial form). At least they’re giving me chances; most magazine editors start reading the draft I sent them and reject the manuscript outright rather than say they’ll publish it after some revision.

I wish open rejections–“We’ll publish it if you make these changes”–were much more common, rather than closed rejections. That said, I realize that journals (and literary agents) receive a great many submissions and don’t have time to give unknown authors that much attention. Yet unknown authors, if anything, need more attention than extremely famous authors.

Between now and November 15, I’ll not only be busy with a developmental edit and with my NaNoWriMo manuscript, but I’ll also be revising theWitch’s Familiar manuscript, since its due dates is November 15. This is what I’ve always wanted to do–be a full-time author without a day job. However, I imagined it with enough royalties to live on.

NaNoWriMo

2 Nov

It’s day two of NaNoWriMo, the November challenge to write a novel of 50,000 words or 175 pages in only one month (www.nanowrimo.org). The emphasis is on  quantity rather than quality, in order to get writers and would-be writers to work on that novel they’ve been putting off. After the month of November is over, you can go back over the manuscript and revise as much as you want.

My brother informed me via Facebook that he registered for NaNoWriMo and asked me if I’m doing it this year. I’m very glad that he’s
finally working on a novel rather than just world building and character building. I also decided to take up the challenge, but with a little artistic
license: since I have a January 5 due date for a long story to submit to Wormhole Electric (www.wormholeelectric.com), I should work on two or three long stories rather than one novel. So that’s what I’m doing. I have about thirty pages so far, 145 to go. Who knows, at the rate that
one of these long stories is going, it might end up being a novel.