A Week of Writing: 6/25/18 to 7/1/2018

I usually post these on Monday, but the fates conspired against me yesterday and kept me far away from the keyboard. Anyway, here’s the week that was.

Words to Write By

This is one of my favorite quotes because it delivers a great piece of writing advice in typical Twain fashion.

“Substitute ‘damn’ every time you’re inclined to write ‘very;’ your editor will delete it and the writing will be just as it should be.” 

― Mark Twain

So, let’s give this a shot. Here are a few sentences from a recent draft of a novelette, and, as Mr. Twain suggests, I’ve replaced the verys with damns.

  • “It’s a movie. And not a damn good one.”
  • “Unfortunately, a fair amount.” The angel frowned. “I have a damn delicate situation on my hands and direct intervention would not be prudent at this time.”
  • Adramelech’s doll jerked and then slid off the chair. Its cotton arms and legs possessed no articulation, so the demon couldn’t move it damn well.

Yep, all of those could go (with a tiny bit of revision on the last sentence), but, I have to admit, I kind of like the second sentence with the damn intact.

The Novel

Well, I wrote a new chapter one, and revised chapters two and three to match last week. The holiday is going to slow me down this week, but I’m feeling better about where I am overall with the novel. I’ve also set a hard deadline for when I need to turn the novel over to my critique partners and when I need to get it to my agent.

Short Stories

For the first time in a while, I didn’t work on any new stories. That said, there are a couple of big markets opening for submissions this week, so I’ll be sprucing up a story or two.

A good week for submissions stats.

  • Submissions Sent: 4
  • Rejections: 4
  • Acceptances: 1
  • Publications: 1

Kind of ticked all the boxes last week with submissions, rejections, an acceptance, and a publication. One of those rejections was a real heart-breaker, a story that had been shortlisted for a long time and was eventually rejected. I’m pretty inured to rejections at this point, but those sting a bit. The acceptance was with a new market, and I’ll talk more about that in the coming weeks.

The submissions for last week put me at 72 for the year.

The Blog

Only two blog posts last week (and probably two this week as well).

6/25/18: A Week of Writing: 6/18/10 to 6/24/18

The usual weekly writing update.

6/29/18: 6 Reasons for Rejections

In this post I listed six of the most common reasons stories are rejected.


Keep working on revisions of the novel is goal number one. Goal number two is prepare stories for two big markets that opened for submissions this week.

Story Spotlight

This week’s story spotlight is my second publication with Ellipsis Zine, a market that is fast becoming one of my favorites. The story is a bit of dystopian sci-fi flash called “The Inside People.” You can read it for free by clicking the link below.

“The Inside People”

That was my week. How was yours?

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