Weeks of Writing: 1/25/21 to 2/7/21

Missed a week, but I’m back with a double dose of writerly doings.

Words to Write By

This week’s quote comes from author Joyce Carol Oates.

“The first sentence can’t be written until the final sentence is written.”

—Joyce Carol Oates

I think I may have used this quote before, but it’s still a good one, and recently I’ve found it to be an absolute truism in my work. Now, sure, when I start writing a novel or story there IS a first sentence, but I’ve found nothing is more likely to change in subsequent drafts than the beginning. Be it a novel or a microfiction I dashed off in five minutes, the beginning almost always needs work. I think a lot of that is because the act of writing is an act of discovery. No matter how thorough my outline, no matter how much I think I know about the story, by the time I get to the end, I’ve learned all kinds of new things about the plot, the characters, the theme, you name it. So, when I go back and look at that first chapter or first paragraph or whatever, invariably where I started is not where I ended up.

The Novel(s)

Well, as I hinted at a few weeks ago, a certain situation that was hurting my productivity on my novels is now resolved, and I’m moving full steam ahead on revisions. I’m going over the notes from my critique partners, and I’ve started revising Late Risers with a goal of a final draft by the end of the month. The next revision of Hell to Play will begin after that. I’m feeling pretty positive about both books, and I’m already thinking about my next big project

Short Story Submissions

I’ve been fairly active with submission over the last couple of weeks.

  • Submissions Sent: 4
  • Rejections: 8
  • Acceptances: 0
  • Publications: 0
  • Shortlist: 0
  • Pending: 7

Four more submission gives me a total of thirteen for the year, though I did send a fourteenth this morning. My submission pace is right on target for one hundred submissions for the year. I am still hunting for that first acceptance of 2021, however, and, well, the rejections are rolling in. This kind of thing happens, and I’ve had much longer rejections streaks than the oh-for-thirteen I’m currently on. It’s certainly not time to panic, but if I don’t have at least one acceptance by the end of the month, THEN I’ll panic. 🙂

Night Walk

If you follow me on social media, you likely saw the announcement that The Molotov Cocktail is publishing a collection of my flash fiction titled Night Walk and other Dark Paths. Needless to say, I’m pretty damn excited about it. The collection will release in the spring of this year, but until then, there’ll  be all kinds of previews here on social media, including interviews, a sample story, and some sneak peeks at the gorgeous cover and interior art by artist Valerie Herron. In the meantime, here’s the official announcement (with some of that aforementioned gorgeous art) and a peek at the table of contents.


As usual, my focus is on getting more submissions out, continuing to revise the novel(s), and, now, promoting my upcoming flash fiction anthology. 🙂

And that was my week. How was yours?

2 Comments on “Weeks of Writing: 1/25/21 to 2/7/21

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