Writing Wins and Woes: Don’t let clouds stop you from writing

Writer Wins and Woes: Don't let clouds stop you from writing

A cloudy day often stops many things. A picnic. A cook-out. A hike. Swimming. A walk with the dog. Clouds can burst into rain and so it deters us; but clouds can also break into bright sunshine. It’s all perspective. As a writer, I can’t let a few clouds in my way stop me from continuing on in my writer’s journey.

Shari’s Stats for May:
Submissions: 7
Rejections: 8
Acceptances: 2
Publications: 6 (this includes my author story and interview)

This week I’ve had two rejections. One from Youth Imagination and one from Enchanted Conversation. That was just a matter of not winning a contest. I also had a very nice email from Guardian Angel Kids, telling me they “love my work.” This is a reminder of why I’m in this for the long haul. There’s going to be some lovers and there’s going to be some haters. I submitted to two places this week. Guardian Angel Kids and SQ magazine. Check them out here if you’d like to submit to them as well.
http://sqmag.com/submissions/

Guardian Angel Kids is on my sidebar if you enjoy writing poems, stories or articles for kids.

Thought for the Day: Set a goal of writing for so many minutes each day. Even if it’s only 30 minutes per day. You can get a lot accomplished in 30 minutes if you are focused.

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Writing Wins and Woes: What a writer’s house looks like

Writing Wins and Woes: What a writer's house looks like

I don’t know if I should have captioned this “What a writer’s house looks like” or “What a reader’s house looks like” but anyway, this is a painting my husband did of our bedroom. It does justice to the stacks of books “we” have accumulated because we are both readers. I am a writer, so I read. Writers should be readers. The only way to write well is to be well read. Studying great writers helps us to write great.

Hopefully your house, if you’re a writer, isn’t quite this bad, and maybe you have Kindle now and don’t need all this, but I think there is nothing so satisfying as holding a book in your hands. I have such contentment reading a book I love and feel such disappointment when it’s done. I can’t be involved in those character’s lives anymore. I usually go away wanting more.

As writers, we need to strive to make our characters come alive so our readers want more when the stories over. Hopefully, our audience isn’t saying, “Thank God, it’s over.” That’s a little private joke in our family, but it can be so true of a lousy book or story. We don’t even want to finish it. I’ve filed a few books into the round file.

Well, I didn’t submit a thing this week. It’s the first I haven’t in a while, but it was a very busy week, and I’ve had a few upsets. So…next week. I also got a rejection from Untied Shoelaces of the Mind. I know you’ve been waiting to hear how they raked me over the coals, but oddly, they didn’t say anything. Rejected, without a word. So I guess, it was even worse than usual.

Happy Memorial Day to all the veterans and service people out there. We appreciate all you’ve done and do. God bless everybody and here’s to good writing successes in your future. The odds are never in our favor, but we write on.

Thought for the Day: Build characters that live and breathe. And don’t collect as many books as we do.

Author Story

Author Story

I’m pleased to share my author story which is featured today on Flash Fiction Chronicles. Please read and comment on the website. I think the most important thing I’ve learned as a writer is to keep on persevering even when I feel worthless as a writer. When I get rejection after rejection, I have to keep positive, stay the course and keep submitting. Anyway, thanks for reading my story.

Cell Tower

Cell Tower

This is the link to my story, “Cell Tower” which is a twist on Rapunzel. I would have posted yesterday but it only went up today. So enjoy and please, please, please comment on the site. To comment you must put in a code that is on the site. I usually refresh the code because the letters are sometimes hard to read. If you refresh, only numbers will come up and they are a bit easier on the eyes. Anyway, read and enjoy my modern day fairy tale. PS It has a dragon in it.

Writing Wins and Woes: 50 Acceptances

Writing Wins and Woes: 50 Acceptances

Yes, this is me shamelessly promoting my cute incorrigible corgi again. Before you get a corgi, make sure you’re not too attached to your furniture. Mine likes to chew the stuffing out of mine; also she has been known to chew on the floor (hardwood and linoleum) shoes, books (including ones I’ve had stories in) and probably about fifty percent of my favorite things. As I’ve said in a bio, she keeps it real.
What else keeps it real for a writer? Well, rejections do. Like that lead in? Yes, I’ve had another rejection this week. My week isn’t complete without one. I’ve had a rejection from allegory, my eighth time submitting this particular story which I happen to love. Why doesn’t everybody love it like I do?
But I don’t want to focus on that. I’ve had a great month so far. My 50th acceptance came from the Photo Flash Contest. It was followed almost immediately by the Penn Cove literary Award, making it 51. I feel totally blessed. Here are some links to some of my accepted stories. Don’t feel you have to read them. I’m just proud.
Ashes to Ashes http://www.fairytalemagazine.com/2013/11/ashes-to-ashes-by-shari-l-klase.html
Tree of Life http://www.enchantedspark.com/photoflarepastwinners.php?s=congratulations-to-our-march-winner-shari-l-klase-2
The Visitor http://metromoms.net/2013/03/17/the-visitor-by-shari-l-klase/
Beta Tribe http://www.youthimagination.org/index.php/publish/current-issue/december-2013/item/72-beta-tribe-by-shari-klase
The Forgotten Smile http://whidbeystudents.com/2013/10/04/october-news/

I’m stopping there. I’m so happy to say that there are many more.

Thought for the Day: Encourage yourself by looking back at your accomplishments. Then, move on to further greatness.

Writing Wins and Woes: During Winning Times

Writing Wins and Woes: During Winning Times

Again, I am cheerleading for my husband. This painting is actually a mural on our living room wall, which is still a work in progress for him. This wintry scene is a story in itself. Viewers of it can lose themselves in the narrative of colonial-type settlers, carolers strolling in robes, horse and wagons, and one or two sci-fi elements thrown in because that’s what he likes to do with his paintings. Enjoy.

I’m pleased to announce that I had two more publications since I wrote last. I am still reeling in my blessings this week. One was for the Photo Flash contest and the other was for the Penn Cove literary Arts Award. Here are the links for both.

http://whidbeystudents.com/
http://www.enchantedspark.com/photoflarepastwinners.php

These are both flash stories, very short, so please read, enjoy and comment. Writers love feedback.

Also, I want to include the link for my author interview on Strange Musings, concerning my story in the anthology, Alternate Hilarities. I loved answering the questions about how I came to write the story and other pieces of writing trivia.
http://www.strangemusingspress.com/2014/05/author-interview-shari-klase.html

All this is very exciting. So here is some words of advice for the those few and far between winning times.
1. Enjoy the win. That’s first. Sometimes we worry about what’s coming next when we’re on a winning roll. Will there be ten more rejections that follow? Probably. But enjoy the win while you have it.
2.Keep writing. It’s also easy to rest and bask in your win and not move forward. Don’t do that. Staying stagnant is moving backwards. Keep on writing and submitting.
3. Take advantage of opportunities to toot your horn. Publicity is great for gaining readership and moving toward bigger publications. Don’t be afraid to do that or too humble to do that. It is stepping in time toward your goal of achieving in your writing profession. This is your job if you are a writer. Don’t let people tell you you’re being proud, or don’t tell yourself that. If you want to be a successful writer, you have to advertise.
4. Be prepared for rejections. I have to say it. I know when I succeed, failure is just a step behind me, sometimes half a step. Don’t get discouraged. It’s also part of the process. They’re not failures; they’re lessons to help you write better next time. Any publisher will tell you you’re story is probably not a total flop, at least most will, it’s just competing with many others. This time your story didn’t make it. Next time it may. In my early writing days, a few rejections kept me from submitting. I didn’t want to open myself up to such criticisms of what was more than my writing; more like a part of me. Every writer feels that way. You’ll wound and you’ll have scar tissue but you’ll heal and you’ll be stronger.
5. Don’t quit. That’s a funny thing to say when you’ve just succeeded in winning, but some people say, Okay, I’ve done it. I’ve accomplished my goal. I resign. Don’t resign. Keep going. Some of the best writers did that. Need I say, To Kill a Mockingbird. The best is yet to come.

I need to say to those who aren’t in winning times right now, I did have two rejections this week as well–Timeless Tales and Knowonder! and Guess what? They both hurt. Rejections sting, but I’m moving on. You move on, too.

Writing Wins and Woes: Happy May

Writing Wins and Woes: Happy May

May is starting out great and maybe not so much, but I am happy. Again, I am privileged to have a story in Guardian Angel Kids, the unusual art issue and this time it comes with a bonus. A drawing by my talented daughter.
http://www.guardian-angel-kids.com/05-014-3DFlipbook/index.html

I also had a win for the monthly contest at Enchanted Conversation, a fairy tale magazine. I will post the link when the story is up. Melinda, you’ll be very pleased that the story chosen was “Cell Tower”.

With such good news, I hate to dampen the mood with news of a rejection as well from Youth ‘magination for a story I personally liked but felt like a rough draft to them. I might work on it and submit elsewhere but I don’t know too many other places that publish YA stories anymore.

I submitted to Youth ‘magination and Untied Shoelaces this week. Yes, I’m barking up that old tree again. I’ll let you know the humiliation when it’s received. For those just tuning in, that particular publisher tends to really pour on the criticism. the last one I received for Monkey Shines, a story that Alternate hilarities liked, read that “she didn’t laugh even once” while reading it. Thank you very much. Yet, I keep sending humorous stories to them. I am such a glutton for punishment.

Thought for the day: I guess I have to say it, even though I have a rough time practicing it. Roll with the Punches. When you win, it is exhilaration. When you lose, it is despondence. Don’t let it stop you. Keep on punching.