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April 20-22

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August 16-20

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Archive for June 11th, 2007

Progress Report, in which the clouds are parted, and light streams down in bright, unbroken beams

Had some difficulty getting myself on track last week. Part of that may be attributable to foot-dragging on my part (see below). It also seemed like I suddenly spent a lot of time responding to various emails and making travel arrangements–most of it writing-related, but not actual writing. Again, my inability to multitask rears its ugly head.

That said, I guess I did accomplish some genuine writing stuff. I got some line edits from Edmund Schubert for “The Frankenstein Diaries.” These proved to be very minor–easy fixes. Edmund quite rightly noted my protagonist’s tendency to burst into tears–appropriate at some points in the story, but overused in others. I dried it up a little.

Next I did something I’d been dreading: I took a hard look at “The Multiplicity Has Arrived,” trying to fix the story’s predictability. One of the main problems here is that it’s still too long; readers are getting too much time to figure it out. So I looked, first and foremost, for ways to cut it. I also questioned the story’s ending, and considered taking an entirely different angle on it. It’s good, even necessary, to challenge your own assumptions about a piece–but it’s frustrating at the same time, especially when you can’t think of solutions to the problems you see.

Then yesterday, just as I was about to set the story aside and work on something else, the clouds parted a little, and I noticed an entire scene that could be cut. All it does, I realized, is reiterate something I’ve already established. Eureka! What’s more, I will have to do very little revision to other scenes as a result of this one being cut–a sure sign that I didn’t need it in the first place. I also figured out a way to tweak the ending that should improve the story without requiring a substantial rewrite of earlier material.

Hope to have these changes done tomorrow. After that, I need to turn my attention to a rewrite of “Gone Black.” I’ll be on the road to the Twin Cities come Thursday, but I should be able to get at least some work done while I’m gone.

Write Club updates:

Rejections have been coming fast ‘n’ furious. The latest batch:

Hub deemed “Small Favors” to be “Suitable for publication, but not suitable for Hub.” That’s a tier two form rejection. Response time, five months.

Of “Doppler Shift,” Apex Digest said, “It was a decent story; it just didn’t have the horror aspect for which we’re looking.” Response time, twelve days.

Tier two reject from Noctem Aeternus, for “A Walk in the Woods, with Voices.” Response time, eight days.

And two tier one rejections from agents on queries for The Watermasters.

Oh, and if anyone’s planning to fly to Atlanta for Dragon*Con, now might be the best time to book. I just checked Orbitz yesterday, and found round-trip airfare for less than $200 apiece. Can’t beat that with a stick.

And with that public service announcement, I’m outta here.