History That Never Was

Home of Dawn Vogel: Writer, Historian, Geek

November 2014 recap

By the numbers:
Stories out at the beginning of the month: 8
Acceptances received: 0
Rejections received: 9
Stories withdrawn: 0
Resubmissions: 5
New Submissions: 0
Stories out at the end of the month: 4

So first off, NaNoWriMo. Yeah, that happened. Here’s what I posted to Facebook last night: “So I didn’t finish my NaNo novel this year. Or, more accurately, I stopped writing at around 34K words and didn’t even get to 50K (there was no chance I would finish the novel based on how many words each chapter was). But I’m okay with that. I took a brief break from writing, and then knocked out almost 1,700 words of a short story tonight.”

The longer version of what happened is that in trying to make a main character who wasn’t super good at everything (like many YA protagonists are), I wound up with a main character who was actually a bit of a whiny baby. And, as it turned out, one of the secondary character wound up being a whole lot more interesting than the main character. I could have just taken the novel in a different direction when I came to this conclusion, but I also discovered that my world building had more than a couple of gaps, and I was running into problems with that as well. Coupling all of that with the traditional “ZOMG craft shows” that started towards the end of November, I decided to throw in the towel.

Instead, I focused on planning out a VERY aggressive short story writing schedule for December and into 2015. Assuming that I can maintain my planned pace, I should have seven new short stories completed by the end of April, as well as finishing up/editing two novellas, and getting started on edits for a novel I wrote a year and half ago. And I’m going to do some major surgery on four of the short stories that I’ve had making the rounds, as I’ve decided it’s time to see how I can improve them. If all goes well, I’m planning to try to keep to this really aggressive schedule throughout the year, giving myself “off” weeks when I’ve got other things going on. My plan involves writing five days every week (I always give myself Wednesdays and Fridays off). If I can hold myself to that plan, I think the odds are good that I can write a LOT of short stories in 2015. And maybe that really interesting secondary character will get his story told, which makes me happier about the outcome of my NaNo this year.

In other short story news, I’m pleased to announce that my short story, “A Dark Place,” is a part of Episode Five of Fictionvale. The editors worked with me extensively on this story, and it turned out much improved from the original draft that I submitted. So I’m really grateful that they saw the diamond in the rough that my story was, and helped turn it into the pretty shiny thing that it is now! (And I learned a LOT from the process, too, which is going to help me with the surgery on my other stories that have been circulating!)

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