Writing Update: Short Story Trenches

Howdy folks!

It has been some time since I’ve done an update on my writing progress so I thought I’d fill you all in on my super-exciting writerly-world!

Image from baristanet.com.


My first novel, The Denouncer, is officially dead. After some workshop feedback, I had another editor friend take a look at the manuscript. And true to the last editor’s word, the beast is in dire need of a major re-write and plot overhaul – which I have no intention of doing.

I never doubted the first editor’s assessment of the novel, and I even felt like putting it on hold to work on later this year or early next year. The whole idea was to work on character-driven short stories until I felt I had some much-needed distance from my novel. But the fire for the story has died, and I just don’t want to re-write Andreu’s story. Maybe two years from now, or ten years, the spark will alight again, but not anytime soon. I have learned heaps in this whole process, and that will have to be my reward for this effort.

Currently, I am working on Dragon’s Jewel. Since I have already waffled on about it in this post, I won’t do it again. Suffice to say the first draft is coming along. I should have it completed by summer’s end.

Short Stories

I have five short stories I hope to have completed by the end of this year. The first, titled Sky, is about a boy who attempts to use magic to get out of doing his laundry, but instead leads to so much more. I submitted this to Crossed Genres earlier this year, who rightly rejected it. I then asked for a few critiques over on the SFFWorld.com workshop thread. Based on the feedback I got, I revised the story and sent it off to Expanded Horizons. I’m sure it will get rejected there, too, but I am somewhat happy with the story at this point. I’ll try another market (maybe Strange Horizons) once I get it back (before subjecting the world to Sky via Smashwords).

The second is called The Price of a Princess and was inspired by this and this post by Deby Fredericks of Wyrmflight. It is going through its second (or is it third) round of critique and edits. I hope to have this ready to submit to Tor.com by the end of this month.


Did you just read that right? Tor.com?

Yes, I am going to submit it to Tor.com. Their response time isn’t that bad. If they don’t like it, I’ll know it in about three months. I’ve waited longer for non-professional, non-paying markets to say no, so why not? Once they do say no, I’ll just put it on Smashwords. The problem is that the story is about ten thousands words long. There are not too many markets (paying or non-paying) that take that length. Tor.com is one of the few.

The other three shorts; A Pirate Named Phacelia, G.O.D.S., and Crossing; are in their infancy. My pirate story will be completed soon as that is for the SFFWorld.com short story forum contest and it is due by the end of this month. The result will be rough, but that’s okay. For me, the contests are about producing entertaining material – not winning.

Speaking of entertainment…

SFFWorld.com Forum Anthology

The cover art for this is looking so awesome! I wish I can share it with you, but not yet. I am very happy I decided to give myself a budget for this second anthology, because I get to work with an artist who knows how to put together a book cover (it is gorgeous!). And I’ll be using the services of J. W. Manus for proofreading and file-formatting. This year’s product should look as sharp as any other professional product out there.

The contents of the anthology will be just as good (or better) than last year’s effort. We are using a more traditional method to judge the material to be accepted and we have Mark Lawrence contributing a story.


Did you just read that the Mark Lawrence will be contributing a story? The Prince of Thorns Mark Lawrence?

Yup. 😀

If nothing else, this anthology will be darkly entertaining.

Until later, my friends, write well.

7 thoughts on “Writing Update: Short Story Trenches

    1. You do know that’s also the title of PBS series, right? It is very popular around here and is one of my favorites. Except those writers are ruthless! How could they kill *him* off!?

      1. I hadn’t realised it made it over there actually! It’s produced on ITV over here but pleased it has gone international.

        Yes, very shocked *he* was killed off 😉

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