A Week of Writing: 4/12/21 to 4/18/21

Another week of writing come and gone. Here’s how I did.

Words to Write By

This week’s quote comes from novelist Doris Lessing.

“There are no laws for the novel. There never have been, nor can there ever be.”

—Doris Lessing

If you’re writing a novel and you’re on social media (so, you know, everyone), you’re likely to read dozens of posts about how you absolutely, positively cannot do X or Y when you write a novel. You will then undoubtedly wonder about the successful novels you’ve read that do exactly those things. This is not to say that advice of this nature has no merit, but like Doris Lessing says, I don’t think you should look at these musts and nevers as absolute laws. I do think it’s important to understand why the same things pop up in the never-dos, so if you do use them, you can avoid certain pitfalls. Like writing style advice, I believe it’s also important to understand that some of the nevers and musts in novel writing center around genre conventions. So, for example, something that won’t work in literary fiction might be just fine in epic fantasy.

Short Story Submissions

A little slow in submission land last week

  • Submissions Sent: 1
  • Rejections: 2
  • Acceptances: 0
  • Publications: 0
  • Shortlist: 0
  • Pending: 11
  • 2021 Total Subs: 32

Just one submission last week, but it gives me 32 for the year, and that keeps me on pace for 100. The two rejections were of the form variety, so nothing much to report there. I need to get four more submissions out by end of month if I want to stay on pace, and I don’t think that’ll be too hard.

Night Walk

My flash fiction collection Night Walk & Other Dark Paths releases this week on 4/22/21! The anthology is available for preorder in print and digital through Amazon (click the cover below). If you’d like to read the foreword for the anthology from Molotov Cocktail editor Josh Goller, click here. It’s an excellent introduction to the kinds of stories you’ll find in the anthology.

I have a new feature on the blog called Night Walk Wednesday, where I give you all the rejectomancy stats on individual stories from the collection. You can check out past installments below.


I have a monthly Rejectomancy column over at Dark Matter Magazine where I discuss elements of the writing and submission process. It’s similar to what I do here on the blog, but the column often goes into a bit more depth. Anyway, my latest article went up last week, and it’s all about how and when to send a withdrawal letter. You can read it by clicking the link below.

Read “An Honorable Retreat: The Withdrawal Letter”


Same as last week: send out more submissions and keep going on my commission work.

That was my week. How was yours?

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