However, I’m not going to perform self-flagellation over it either. Life, family, work, writing, and just about everything else seem to overshadow my social networking. Oh well.
Many things have happened since I’ve last posted:
First: I was very saddened to learn that the coordinating judge of the Writers of the Future Contest, K.D. Wentworth passed away last week. I never met Kathy, but had always heard such wonderful things about her and only interacted with her on the most superficial level on her SFF.NET forum. Her passing really hit me and I found myself thinking about her quite a bit this past week. Kathy was the first editor that looked at my writing and said it was good enough to be published. She told me this by making one of my stories a finalist in the contest, and in doing so said that it was a publishable story. I had always hoped to meet Kathy, but only got to know her a little more by reading some of the wonderful tributes that have been posted as well as her obituary. Of course, she’s touched so many lives in so many ways, but I’ll always know her in only a couple of ways: her writing and her discovery of so many writers and their works. Perhaps many of those discovered writers would have made it anyway, but they definitely got a nice shove forward when she chose them as finalists.
Second: In March I attended a wonderful workshop taught by Dean Wesley Smith out on the Oregon Coast in Lincoln City. The workshop was devoted to Character Voice and Setting. Wow. I cannot say enough good things about Dean, the workshop, and the workshop attendees. Dean is a wonderful instructor and just a great guy. His wife, Kris Rusch (you may have heard of her) dropped in from time to time to assist as well as just to sit around and chat. Dean and Kris craft workshops really make you produce. In that one week we had to write two complete short stories (between 3k-6k) as well as writing exercises that ended up being another 2k words a day, and read everyone else’s short stories. A ton of work, but it was glorious. The two short stories I wrote while I was there are as good or better than short stories I spent a week or two on at home. I spent an afternoon on each short story: the first one was about 4k words, the second about 6k. Not bad at all. A tiring, but rewarding week. I could go on and on about their workshops, but I came away from that week a much better writer than I was going into it.
Third: My day job has been absolutely brutal of late and really saps my energy. Despite all that I’ve been managing a decent word count every day. On a bad day it’s simply 250 words, but hey, it’s something. On a good day I’m averaging over 1k. Great word counts considering the 12 hour days I normally have at the day job (that includes the commute though, about an hour each way).
Fourth: I currently have two stories under consideration as Writers of the Future: Quarter 1 and Quarter 2. Judging for Q1 was probably either completed by Kathy before she passed, or was very close to being completed. Results have been coming in for over a month now, but very slow. I believe we’re at the end of the Q1 judging period, and so far I’ve not gotten a rejection. Of course, there haven’t been any Honorable Mentions or Semi-Finalists yet, which also probably means that Finalists have not been called. So…I’m obviously hoping for another finalist, but an HM or a Semi would be nice as well. I feel pretty good about my Q1 and Q2 stories, but we shall see, it’s almost impossible to guess, and a writer is never a good judge of his/her work.
That’s enough for now, and for any fellow WotF submitters reading this: if you’ve gotten a rejection keep on submitting! I have many, many WotF rejections under my belt, and if you haven’t heard results yet, then good luck to you!