Tag Archives: The First Line

Writing Wins and Woes: Running the Maze

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Writing, submitting, getting published, it’s like running a maze isn’t it? You never know if you are going to get to the end? You don’t know if you’ll finish well or get stuck in the middle of it lost? Sometimes you don’t know if you are on the right track? Should I concentrate on short stories, novels, or even flash fiction? Should I go for an anthology, publish independently, small press or wait for a major press to pick me up? Do I need an agent? It’s a maze, for sure.

All this is introduction for the Maze Runner series, which I just finished reading by James Dashner. This is one of those YA series I probably never would have read if my daughter hadn’t encouraged me. I’m not usually up for YA fluff. But this series was tolerably good.

What I liked: I liked the concept of a group of guys placed in a box one by one and deposited in a mysterious place with a maze. They are not sure what they are supposed to do; probably just figure the way through the maze. But it’s more complicated than that. I like the made up jargon the boys come up with. Their memories have been swiped and they have no identity other than their names. So they make up their own identities. Very cool. I like the weird griever creatures. Having not seen the movie, I never could get a handle on what these things actually look like. They are made of mechanical stuff and blubber and they have weapons attached to them. The characters were fairly likeable and introducing a girl into the mix of boys was a necessary climax.

What I didn’t like: Too many people died in the series. The main characters changed a little too much for my liking. There was not enough character development for some of the group guys. I didn’t like the girl character enough. Later in the series, I didn’t like her at all but since the author switched to a different girl hero that’s probably what he wanted. I didn’t really like the ending. I won’t say why because it will give away the main gist of the story which was finding a cure for a disease everyone was getting. It was the reason for the maze after all.

Well, now on to things I hate. I do have a whine box again this week.

Whine Box
This week I was rejected by the First Line again. I’ve never been able to crack the code. I tried their last line category this time. Still nothing to celebrate. It was not a personal rejection which made it even harder. Just we’re not going to use your story. Blah! I also entered a writing contest Garden State Speculative fiction writing. I did not win anything there either. Oh well. I’m to get a written critique from them so it’s not a total lost cause.
Brag Box
I did, however, have a story accepted again in Guardian Angel Kids. Thank you, so much, to the folks there. For some reason they keep believing in me. Here is the link so you can read my story, if you want, “Space Capsule to the Moon” http://www.guardian-angel-kids.com/011-014-3Dflipbook/index.html#p=4
My publication in Timeless Tales will be out next Saturday, the 15th of November. I’m so excited that I’ll be able to hear someone reading one of my stories. They designed a mini cover for each of the stories. Here’s mine. I’m so excited. bee story My story is about bees and their dancing.

I submitted to two places this week. Here are the links for them: Fireside http://www.firesidefiction.com/submissions/ but they are currently closed to submissions and Bastion(Thanks, Holly, for the info) http://www.bastionmag.com/submissions

Thought for the Day: The only way out of the maze is to keep running. If you give up, you’ll always be stuck in the middle of nowhere. Keep writing.

Writing Wins and Woes: A little less laziness, please.

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Okay, I confess. I’ve been a lazy writer this week. I only wrote about 1000 words so far, and I did have opportunity to write. I chose to chisel away at my time doing mundane things, like playing with the pooch and surfing facebook and enjoying a lunch out with a family member. But hey wait. If writing becomes a complete duty, and therefore becomes unenjoyable, what are the chances that my work will shine?

Well, that is the excuse I use for today. In the future, I tell myself, a little less laziness, please. Unless I work at writing, my dreams will never be fulfilled. I have no brags or whines this week. I did submit to The First Line. Here’s a link if you’d like to do it also. http://www.thefirstline.com/submission.htm
If you check out their home page, you can submit to what I submitted to. It is a little contest called The Last Line. The First line provides the first line and you creatively spin a story from that. As you can guess, the last line provides the last line that your story must end with. I’ve submitted to First Line before and haven’t yet made the cut, but I’m still hoping. Deadline for last line is Oct. 1,2014 so you still have a few days to come up with a winning story.

Thought for Today: Don’t beat yourself up for slackness as long as you don’t make a habit of it.

Writing Wins and Woes: Brag Box Edition

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I love fairy tales. I love reading them, and I love writing them. I’ve written a few that have been published on the Enchanted Conversation website. Some of my children’s stories I consider more like fairy tales. So, I have been trying unsuccessfully in the past to have my work accepted in one of my favorite fairy tale magazines. However, this forthcoming issue, 12 Dancing Princesses, I’ve finally had a break through.
Without further ado I present to you, Writer’s brag box as promised.

Writer’s Brag Box

I had a piece accepted this week at Timeless Tales. This work was hard fought. My original submission came with a non acceptance, non rejection caveat with a rewrite suggestion. When writers get one of these they can do one of two things 1. Get angry and delete because the publisher dared to question the greatness of your submission as you intended the work to be. or 2. The writer can swallow a little pride, take the suggestion and rewrite a better story. I’ve done the latter and so my rewrite was accepted. What is so great about this particular magazine is that it is digital and audio, so I will have an opportunity to either record my story or have someone else do it. Further details will be forthcoming in the weeks to come. Celebrate with me!

This is one of the weeks where it is good to be a writer. Not only did I successfully see a dream through to fruition, but I wrote another full story to submit to another magazine. This one is also a favorite of mine. I have also tried submitting to them before unsuccessfully, The First Line. While I don’t know what the outcome will be, I keep my hopes high. As you should, too, fellow writer. Write on.