So far (knock on wood!) my resolution to write more in 2018 has been holding up!
“It’s only been two weeks,” you might say, but considering how poorly 2017 as a whole went, I’ll take it. There have still been hiccups — getting sick for five straight days over last weekend notably — but I’m still doing my best. I no longer sound like a series of tortured cracks and squeaks when I try to talk, for which I’m glad. In the deepest throws of my sickness self-pity I did wonder if I’d ever get over that. My worst melodramatic tendencies come out when I’m physically ill. Thank goodness for my very patient girlfriend coaxing me to remember that not everything in our lives is doom and disaster and yes, the coughing and sore throat and headaches will eventually go away.
This week, to celebrate feeling better, I started working on a submission for Circlet’s “Fantastic Beasts And Where To Fuck Them” open call. A friend of mine linked me a while back and I do enjoy some mythical monsters, though this means trying something completely different for me. Once upon a time 10,000 words seemed like a very long story; now I need to do my best to keep within 7,000 without leaving anything out. That part I feel a little shaky on, but I am enjoying my characters quite a lot. They’re kind of throwbacks to one of my most beloved old fandoms in terms of what they are (a human and a supernatural being, a cynic and a performative optimist, a soldier and a writer), but they’re still uniquely themselves. I’ve been working on figuring out character quirks and voices as I slowly shake off the fog of sickness, and it just feels good. While a lot of 2017’s fatalistic ennui still feels like it’s weighing on me, I’m finally feeling good about writing again, and I can’t help but be happy for that. It’s only been two weeks, but whatever! I want to believe this is a good sign.
Honestly, I’m both excited and nervous about this whole process. This will be the first thing I’ve worked on for submission in over a year at this point; a lot of what I worked on last year was almost strictly all editing, both for a story already accepted and for two separate stories I would like to submit to Less Than Three. One of these has a lot left to work out (including some pretty serious rewrites later on in the guts of the story itself), but one of them is pretty much ready. I just need to format it and do the actual submission… which to be honest, is the hardest part for me. But I’ve got this short story rolling to, as a brand new thing to a publisher I’ve never worked with before. It’s scary! But I want to at least try, because I am nothing if extremely good at kneecapping myself for opportunities.*
(* I have also decided, however, in the event that the story does not get picked up, I will still post it here on the blog. As it stands, it might not fit the anthology’s call or the editor’s specific preferences, but as far as the story and characters are thus far — the piece is only about half-finished at this point — I’m very fond of it. One way or another, I’d like to share it. Either way, I hope that people will enjoy it!)
I haven’t forgotten my other writing resolutions, either. Three pieces specifically to Less Than Three, three pieces for self-pub, and then whatever other things I can write in between. I don’t think this is an impossible thing for me to do, either. I’ve got some things I need and want to follow up on that I let slide last year — maybe I’ll need to restart the process, but at least I want to be able to give things a shot.
Ideally this year can make up for last year in terms of productivity. Maybe that’s too big of an expectation to set for myself, but I’m hoping to ride this positivity wave as long and far as I can. I want to actually try this year, and maybe I’ll only make it so far. I don’t know yet. I can’t know yet! But if I can bounce back from being pretty unpleasantly sick to optimism, then my superstitious self wants to take that as an indicator for the year to come.
In the meantime, I decided to take a few steps about some other things. I juggled my finances (and I’ve been sticking to my budget strongly, of which I am very proud — it’s difficult, when you live in a bustling city and you and your best friends live together and like going out for food), I’ve got a couple of commissions done, and I went ahead and signed up for a Ko-Fi. I have no idea how successful this will be, or how noticed, but like so many things whirling through my head right now — I wanted to give it a try. So if you can, or if you’re willing, please consider clicking and helping me out.