Writing Wins and Woes: Book Review/Whine Box edition

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Happy Halloween! I thought a spooky painting would be appropriate for this time of year. I’m not sure this totally qualifies or not, but I like it. It is, as usual, one of my husband’s. Since I absolutely detest Whine Boxes Let’s get it over with.

Whine Box

I received a rejection this week from Shine Brightly, which is a Christian girls’ magazine for a story that had been short listed. For experienced writers, cover your ears and say “La La La” You already know what this is, but short listed means the editor put the story aside for future determination because it was interesting. However, I’ve had many shortlisted stories come back to me to join my other babies I am trying to adopt out. I wish more would leave the nest. It keeps getting fuller and fuller. Whine over.
Book Review: This week I am reviewing a book I took forever to read. It is a dated writing book by John McCollister called Writing for Dollars. Subtitled: 75 Tips for the Freelance Writer. The reason I say dated is my edition talks about the two computers you could buy, IBM or Apple/Mac. LOL. But it still had some worthwhile ideas. For instance: It said self-publish if you already have an audience. I know a blogger who gets over 100 comments every time she posts. She is a good candidate for self-publishing in my opinion. But then again, she probably doesn’t need to. It also talks about How to get an agent and if you need one. Some people don’t. If you are only submitting short stories, you’ll never need one. or if you want a smaller press, don’t need one. It offers more ways to sell your writing; such as greeting cards, columns for local papers, interviews, etc. It also talks about whether you need to finish that manuscript before you start making queries. Sometimes you don’t. You may want to test the waters for whether it will sell…All very interesting. I’d say this dated book is worth reading. And there’s actually an updated version on Amazon. Here’s the link: http://www.amazon.com/Writing-Dollar-John-McCollister/dp/0824604865/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1414772343&sr=1-1&keywords=writing+for+dollars%2C+John+McCollister

I submitted to Cricket and Guide this week. Here are the links if you want to check either of these worthwhile publications out. http://www.cricketmag.com/6-Submission-Guidelines-for-kids-magazines-for-children-from-toddlers-to-teens and Guide http://guidemagazine.org/writers-guidelines

Thought for Today: Always look for ways to improve the craft of your writing. A writing book can pave the way to new horizons. Sometimes.

Writing Wins and Woes: Do you have an unpublished novel?

Attention writers!!! Do you have an unpublished novel that you haven’t moved forward with? Don’t let it gather dust. Here’s a great opportunity to send it in for a chance to be published, plus earn $5000. I wanted to promote this last week on my blog, but I forgot. Shame on me. But you still have until Friday to send it in. Here is the link for Black Balloon Publishing.



Also, another of my husband’s paintings for your perusal.

Writing Wins and Woes: Book Review/More Whining

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Book Review: The Devil in Massachusetts by Marion L Starkey I’m a big fan of old books. My husband and I attend library book sales regularly. Of course, we’ve accumulated way too many books, but one of the gems I found was this book about the Salem Witch Trials. I’ve always been enamored by the witch trials. I find it extremely interesting that a few teenage girls could cause a whole village to turn against friends, neighbors and loved ones, accusing them of being witches. Many of these people were hung on the evidence of spectral visions that these girls had where supposedly the spirit of “the witches” visited them and caused them harm and/or grief. The girls went into fits and convulsions at the trials of these good people who were flabberghasted by the girls’ testimony. The girls, themselves, were never punished in any way even after the trials were considered to be unethical. Spectral evidence was declared to be unlawful. It was too late for the murdered “witches”, however.

Well, it’s time for another installment of the Whine Box:
This means that I’ve had another rejection. This time my rejection was from Fantasy Scroll Magazine. This rejection was the standard “this story is not a good fit for our magazine”. Of course, it was disappointing but I’ve had some success lately,so I’m taking it in stride. In fact this week, I received a copy of Guide Magazine where I had another of my stories published. This wasn’t a cover story, but it did contain beautiful illustrations of my story.

I submitted to Kids’ Ark and Page and Spine Christmas Story contest this week. Here are the links for these if you’d like to submit to them as well. Kids’ Ark http://www.thekidsark.com/guidelines.htm and Page and Spine contest http://www.pagespineficshowcase.com/twt-aug14.html The page and spine contest has a $5 fee so be aware of that. I don’t usually submit to fee-based things, but if the fee is a small amount, sometimes I make an exception.

Thought for the Day: The key to being a good writer is to be a good reader.

Writing Wins and Woes: Stats/WhineBox/BragBox

What a great week! A guest bog. A new story out, and I even got a little writing in. Not as much as I should but I’ll work harder at that next week. First:miscellaneous Scott's paintings 022

I just love to show off my husband’s paintings. They are so unique. Every one of them could inspire a story or at least, a conversation. Enjoy!

Here are my stats for September:

Submissions: 4

Rejections: 3

Acceptances: 2

As you can see, I have not been submitting the amount of work I previously had. My reason for this is that I made a goal of two submissions a week, and sometimes I feel as if I rush sending work out without properly revising it for better quality. A lot of what I send out could use rewrites, but I want to make my goal, so I send when I shouldn’t. Quantity is nice, but quality is better, so…I am trying to send out better stuff now.

Okay, now the bad stuff:
Whine Box
It goes without saying that I had a rejection this week, hence the whine box. Where from? It was from Electric Spec magazine for a story I did really like but has not hit pay dirt yet. Maybe I need to revise. It wasn’t a personal rejection, which means I got the standard, sorry, we decided not to use it, so I don’t have any ideas yet what to do with it. I’ll have to do some thinking.

Brag Box
I am so creative and versatile, I can substitute little pluses for stars. Ha Ha. The technical aspect of writing is not my strong suit. Sorry for the low techs of my blog. Anyway, I am so excited to report that my fairy tale story for the Twice Upon A Time anthology was accepted! I was surprised. The other stories represented seemed more like dark retellings. Mine wasn’t very dark, but it will be included in the anthology. This anthology looks super if you can judge by the impressive writers and book trailer I’ve seen. Can’t wait to share it with you guys when it’s out.
I also promised that I would include the names of the places I submitted to so any writers out there can do the same if they wish. The last two weeks I submitted to : Guardian Angel Kids. here’s the link if you like to write interesting kids’ stories or articles. It is theme based so be sure to check out the monthly themes.
http://www.guardian-angel-kids.com/submissions.htm I also submitted to Fantasy Scroll Magazine. Here is the link for that if you write speculative fiction. http://fantasyscrollmag.com/submissions/ Please check out the submission grinder/ recently added markets for some more ideas. I often check there. Here’s the link: http://thegrinder.diabolicalplots.com/

Thought for the Day: Don’t be afraid to brag on your accomplishments. As a writer you need to be your own PR man. If you don’t believe in yourself, nobody else will.

Writing Wins and Woes: Daily Science Fiction

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I thought this pic looked kind of science-fictiony to commemorate my first and hopefully, not last, story in Daily Science Fiction. I am so excited beyond words. I submitted here at least 10 times, possibly more, before having a story accepted. Remember the motto: Never give up.

Here is the link: http://dailysciencefiction.com/science-fiction/virtual-reality/shari-l-klase/a-little-piece-of-heaven

Please enjoy and if you can comment on their facebook page. Also feel free to rate my story with the rocket dragons they have at the end. They make it super simple. Just click on any rocket dragon from 1-7, 7 being excellent.

I will back to blog again Friday with my monthly stats and places I submitted to the last two weeks. (and sadly, I will also have a whine box).

Writing Wins and Woes: The Best Kinds of News

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What does a writer get excited about? Mostly, they get excited about publications and acceptances. Well, I’ve found a lot of new things to be excited about as a writer. For instance, I’ve had my first cover story in a printed magazine. Okay, it’s not the Atlantic or the New Yorker or something earth shattering. It’s Guide Magazine, a Christian kids’ magazine, but I’m still excited. The illustration of my story made the cover. Wow!

Also, I am excited because TA-Da! Finally, my Daily Science Fiction story is going to be posted. The big date is Wednesday, Oct 15th, folks! I will be linking to it that day because I am super excited! I’ve been waiting for forever for this. Yes, when I say forever, all the writers out there know exactly what I am talking about.

And my good news is not over. I am going to be doing a guest blog on Blogs by Christian Women. Yay! This will be on Monday of next week, so I will have three blogs next week, instead of one. I hope I’m not overplaying my hand. I hate to inundate people with my blogs. I will link to this as well. So, join me Monday, Tuesday and Friday of next week for my good news blogs. Friday, I will be doing my monthly stats for September, a bit late, but I still want to do it.

Thought for the day: Make the most of every opportunity as a writer. Stretch your vision, set some goals and go for them.

Writing Wins and Woes: Brag Box Edition

Oct GAK Aussie animals

Time for another brag box edition of my blog. I must admit that I love these brag box editions. The whine box, not so much. However, this particular edition I want to give huge props to Guardian Angel Kids, who continue to publish my work and help me follow my dream.

Brag Box
I had another article accepted this week in Guardian Angel Kids, the Aussie animals theme. I chose to write about a little known animal I stumbled across in my web surfing, called the Quokka. If you’d like to learn more about this little guy or other fabulous Aussie animals check out the Guardian Angel Kid October issue. Here is the link:

I’ve done much better in my writing this week. In fact, I went over and above my 3000 word goal, so I am bragging about that, too. We all know pride comes before destruction, so I end my bragging now, at least for me. Instead I will send huge applauds for Holly Jennings, who wrote an amazing article on querying about two weeks ago on the Enchanted Spark website. I am including a link for this article. If you are a writer, you’ll want to read it. It’s full of helpful information. Here it is: http://enchantedspark.com/wordpress1/2014/09/10/guest-blog-by-holly-jennings-the-query-letter/
She actually wrote it a few weeks back, and I wanted to link to it on my blog, but I was remiss. Thank you, Holly for your expertise in this area. In the future she’s going to do an article on agent searching, so tune into Enchanted Spark or keep an eye out here for a reblog of that article as well.
Thought for the Day: Help yourself out in your writing by learning to present yourself better to publishers. The first look may be the only look they give you.