I’d like to start off by wishing all of you a wonderful new year! I don’t know if any of you have made resolutions or not (I have), but whatever your plans I hope that you have a better year ahead than you did behind you. The beginning of the year is always an exciting cap to the holiday season for me. After celebrating our community, our friends and culture over the last six weeks of the year, we reflect on everything we’ve done over the past twelve months and look ahead to the next set. Now we’re here, on the other side of winter, staring down a year filled with promise.
Here at the Burrow, yours truly has tried to set himself up for success right out of the gate. I’ve made a few rather ambitious resolutions this year, most of which revolve around writing. My husband has gotten serious about his craft, and it’s paid off in spades for him. I couldn’t be prouder! Now I’m hoping to carry the momentum of my own progress to really push myself further than I’ve ever tried to go. I’m sure there’ll be stumbles along the way, and they very well might be up front. That’s all right. The important thing is to learn from my mistakes and keep pushing. Achieving my goals isn’t so much the point as striving for them.
This year I’d like to write (and post!) 25 short stories, with ten of them at least being submitted for publication somewhere. As a furry writer, I’ll likely try those zines first — I’d love to be published in Heat or New Fables, and there are other places to try. Maybe towards the end of the year, when I get more comfortable, I’ll try putting myself out there in other sci-fi or fantasy markets. I’m not expecting to get accepted right off the bat, but that’s hardly the point. The point is to create stories and shape them as well as I can, with the express intention of sending them off into the world.
I also want to make sure I keep this blog regularly updated, and with the ambitious writing slate I’m sure there’ll be an awful lot to talk about! There are a lot of readers out there who’ve found this blog through Buddhist and meditation sites, or simply by wandering through WordPress, and I’d like to wholeheartedly welcome you to this space. I’ll be speaking about my practice here, and writing in a general nature, but I’ll also be speaking frankly about sexually explicit themes. A lot of my stories will be adult in nature, so those themes might come up. I’ll try to warn you ahead of time if I’ll be talking about such things.
As part of my goal, I thought it’d be nice to kill two birds with one stone. At the beginning of the month, I’ll talk about my writing goals and at the end, I’ll talk about how well I managed to achieve them.
This month I have two short stories on deck, both of them for a few furry friends that I’d been meaning to write something for. They’re both rather small tales but that makes them excellent candidates for trying to be a bit more structured with my writing — I’ll need to be on the ball if I’m going to make my goal, and if I end up taking commissions for short stories (you laugh, but apparently it’s a thing!) then it’d be good to have a system for cranking them out.
The first short story is a fairly simple boy-meets-girl tale featuring a friend getting fitted for a tuxedo. The second short story is a macrophile’s story about two other friends being intimate and growing at the same time. Weird? Yes. But it’s what I do.
In addition to that, I’ll be dusting off a serial that I had last worked on — oh man, a year ago. I want to update the characters, rewrite the first four parts and pay a little more attention to the character’s personalities and interactions. Again, this is all more fluff, but playing around is a very good way to learn. Hopefully with this exercise I can learn how to manage large scenes and dialogue for very different characters. If everything goes well, the stories will be rewritten and posted every ten days.
So, to summarize, I’ve got five major projects for this month — two short stories that will count towards my total, and three rewritten chapters of a fluff serial that I abandoned a year ago. Not a bad way to try and stretch myself right out of the gate. I’m eager to get started!
One thought on “The Plan (January 2013)”
I realize that it’s easy for someone to advise someone else to face bigger rejection, but your mention of trying out for the fanzines and then maybe some of the big professional magazines brought to mind something I was sure I’d read on Frederick Pohl’s blog recently and which I can’t find. That was that in the early days of his literary agency he’d try sending new writers’s stuff to the smaller magazines, then the larger ones, and so on, until he either exhausted everything or the writer got accepted at his level.
Then Pohl had it explained to him that the sensible thing was to start at the top and work down: why waste a story that the Saturday Evening Post might write on Forgotten Tales of Scentifiction Pulp? You don’t have a finite number of chances at the big time, and if the big magazine takes you, you’re good enough for the majors; if they don’t, you can still try out the smaller places.
And I admit this is advice very easy for me to give, as I’ve not presently got anything to write or submit for rejection. But the reasoning of it is very hard for me to shake, and, I’d really like to see you succeed more wildly than you expect.