YEA!!!! I just submitted my first story! I made a deadline I actually kept. Despite the fact that I was ready to burn this story two days ago it felt really good to stick it in that envelope and drop it in the mailbox. Who am I kidding? It felt great. I feel like I can officially call myself a writer now. I have a computerized tracking system on my laptop, and I felt so professional using it. Name of story--check. Name of magazine--check. Date submitted--double check (because it makes me happy to double check things).
Anyway. Now all I have left to do is wait (let’s hope the waiting includes more writing). I started a new story a few days ago. Just rambling on a page but isn’t that how most stories start out? I like it. It is a lot funnier than the first one. It will also be a lot shorter. But that is what I always say. I just can’t do flash fiction. I don’t think it is meant for everyone. Like some people sprint and others run cross-country, I don’t write flash fiction.
I have another story I started at the same time I wrote Death Walkers (for those of you who are wondering, that was the title of the story I submitted to F&SF), but I can’t make myself work on it because like Death Walkers it is not a happy tale. In fact it is damn near depressing. But hey, depressing is what wins Oscars. Anything with “artistic merit” has to depressing, or at least not funny.
I understand now why my favorite author works on two series interchangeably. I love my characters, and the stories they have to tell, but there are times when they make me want to beat my head against a brick wall. Repeatedly. Over and over until…OK you get the point. So I have taken a break since oh what the middle of January on my novel. I think I am ready to get back to work…hmmm…OK…Two more stories and then I will get back to work. I need to have a constant circulation of stories being submitted in order to increase my chances of making a sale.
In my yearly plan (yes I said yearly plan) I am supposed to write and submit four stories this year. Of course I was also supposed to finish the manuscripts for book one and two of the Fallen Angel Series* (*working title). The story is complex, it is a Dark Fantasy/Horror (for those of you who do not know what dark fantasy is think Vampires) and there are lots of failed attempts at good Vampire fiction. In both my eyes and in the eyes of editors. I don’t know if this helps me or hurts me. On one hand I am very critical of my writing because I have seen so many bad books out there, and I have a very specific idea of what my writing should accomplish. At the same time it is very hard for an Editor or a publisher to take a chance with another Anne Rice wanna-be. For the record, I have not read an Anne Rice book that I liked. Anne Rampling* Yes. A.N. Roquelaure* once or twice. But Anne Rice. Nope. Never. (*Pseudonyms used by Anne).
So I have the Fallen Angels Books but I also have an idea for another unnamed series, which I believe, will be more marketable and more unique. So the question is…do I put the first book on hold and work on the one with the greater likelihood of getting published, even if that means it may be four five or six months before I get a novel ready to be sent out? Or do I stick to what I started send it out and move on to the more marketable novel. This is why you hear authors say, well actually I wrote that book ten years ago. I just couldn’t sell it. The Harry potter books were rejected by like 25 publishers before it was sold, and if you know anything about publishing houses, you know how painfully slow they can be. I would say it was probably two to three years minimum before the first HP book was sold. There is a reason why the first four came out so close together. They were written while the first one was being shopped around.
Anyway…I have written quite a bit today. I am just so excited about my writing. I think I am going to revise my yearly plan…and make some important decisions on which manuscript to work on. Thanks for listening to me blab.
Oh and by the way if anyone wants to join the Missy Lynn Ryan Fan Club contact me. You get a free…. sticker. If anyone wants to be the President of the Missy Lynn Ryan Fan Club (this entails starting the Missy Lynn Ryan Fan Club) contact me as well. :)