Screenshot from my computer.
Yes, it’s a bland image to be sure, but writing fiction isn’t all fun, games, and glory. Once a story is accepted, or in this case two, it doesn’t mean what you’ve submitted to the publisher is perfect. It just means that it’s a good story (well, I hope that’s what it means).
It also means that someone is going to go over your story with the proverbial fine-toothed comb, pointing out issues, everything from word usage to punctuation.
Found at superversivesf.com. No image credit given
So the usual pattern for me and short stories is that I see a submissions call from (usually) an indie publisher, I read the particulars, look at the submissions deadline, and say to myself something like, “I can do that.”
Then as the deadline approaches, and I’ve met all (or most) of the other submissions deadlines I’ve set for myself, I try to come up with an idea for a story that fits the bill.
I prepare a Shunn formatted document, since that’s, more or less, the industry standard, for use as my manuscript pages. Then I copy the submissions requirements into a plain text document, and using other plain text files, create a plot sheet, a character sheet, and any other resources (in a long or complicated story, usually a bunch of URLs leading to research pages) necessary to create the background for my tale. And then I start writing.
I’ll skip over a lot of angst, and let’s say I have finished the first draft, edited it within an inch of its proverbial life, and then finally submitted it, using the method required by the publisher.
And then I wait.
I came across this on twitter:
screenshot taken from twitter
Yeah, that pretty much describes me, or more specifically, this does:
Indiana Jones meme
It’s come back to bite me in the butt more than once.
Okay, here’s the deal. I have the first draft of one novel fully finished, I’m stalled in the middle of the first draft of the second, and several others are in a quasi-state of existence (and I’m terrified of actually beginning the novel editing).
After about the first five chapters of my fantasy novel, I started using the Thursday #writephoto prompts on Sue Vincent’s Daily Echo as the motivation to complete one chapter a week. It worked pretty well, and I actually got to the end with the story being semi-internally consistent.
It still needs a lot of work.