A brief summary of life as experienced by me in the last lots of months, or, what has happened since I last used this blog

My posting has been *coughs* entirely lax in the past few months, so I thought a general update might absolve me.

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So, since January, I have gone from the entirely manageable position of working for one fiction publication (sub-Q), to the somewhat alarming situation of working for four. In short:

  • Fiction Ed at sub-Q
  • Submissions Manager at Type/Cast
  • Editor-in-chief at Luminous Worlds
  • Slush reader at Beneath Ceaseless Skies

The work for sub-Q is irregular – if I have an author to edit (as now), it is death. There are contracts and interviews and re-designs and copy edits and structural edits and galleying and it all somehow comes together and the story goes up. At other times, I can actually forget I am employed here, because there are four other people occupied with dying, leaving me free to waft untethered.

Submission managing at Type/Cast is admin. Submissions are read blind, which means I have to distribute them to the editors and then hound the editors for responses and Microsoft Excel the data to oblivion, and none of this is fun, BUT I do get to send the acceptance letters, which is nice. And the rejection letters, which is much less nice, especially when people email back and ask “but why”. It is also my only publication that doesn’t deal in genre fiction, so I don’t enjoy the reading as much. I’m considering resigning at the end of the year, but I’m a bit worried there will be no one to replace me and I don’t want the publication to fall apart. Then again, I need to consider what is in MY interests sometimes. Something needs to give.

I’m starting a band, baby. Or a fellowship? Or something. I have founded my own magazine called Luminous Worlds and it is opening for submissions in three days time. Needless to say, that has been work-intensive, but I determined to make this happen.

And most excitingly, I am currently slush reading for Beneath Ceaseless Skies. After a multipart auditioning process, where I babbled ad nauseum about my love for Ann Leckie, I have been put on a month-long trial period to ensure I don’t wreak havoc and burn down important things. The audition was instructive in showing me how the magazine is supposed to operate, as was, (dadada dum) getting my own work rejected by BCS in the past. The lovely thing about this publication (apart from all the awards and nominations and shininess)(and the super great stories they publish), is the fact that every author gets feedback, rather than a standard rejection letter. I like being a part of that.

So that’s my “work” (hahahaha, no one pays me) life, but other things are also afoot.

I got a near-miss from Clarkesworld! Woo! Statistically pleasing! I’ve never gotten more than the standard form letter from them, so I found the “close – submit more” very encouraging. After losing heart in the process, I needed renewed vigour, which this provided. I haven’t actually written anything more for them, after encountering a number of false starts, and then getting sucked into other projects.

That’s right, I am, again, writing a novella. Yes, I know that this went so well last time. If at first you don’t succeed, repeatedly bash your head against the wall and hope it budges. This time, guys, this time.

Ñîáàêè ïîä âîäîé îò Seth Casteel [cryazone.com | blogpic.ru]

I have my new writing group, via the MA in Creative Writing course. After losing Ink when I left Rhodes, they go some way towards filling the void. I still get melancholy and nostalgic on Tuesday nights, but then I remember the hassle of organizing pizza from Gino’s and I feel better.

I joined a local hockey team, in part to become a goddess of fitness, in part because I sometimes need to hit stuff and this won’t get me arrested.

Other things have happened, but this is what’s dominating my thoughts right now.

 

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3 thoughts on “A brief summary of life as experienced by me in the last lots of months, or, what has happened since I last used this blog

  1. My word, how do you manage to be so productive, AND write! Jealous in the extreme. I have done so little this year and barely managed to squeak out two measley stories. Please can I ask for some tips!

    • A lot of the time, I feel I am NOT being productive. Given that my lecture load is slight this year, it often seems like other people are achieving much more, and I regularly stress about my lack of ‘proper’ experience. I think that this sort of insecurity probably comes with the territory of any creative industry, and must be similar to your own experience.

      It also helps that I am studying creative writing and thus forced to work to deadlines. 😛

      If you want my advice, I guess it’s to be in equal parts ruthless and kind to yourself. Sit down at a desk and refuse to give up until there are words on the screen. Even if this is late at night and you are tired. Don’t allow yourself the luxury of excuses. Do shit. Take it seriously.

      The kindness comes in when you think the stuff you are producing is average, and oh my god the industry is competitive, and who do I think I am anyway, and I’m a disgrace to my family’s honour, etc. Tell yourself you are good enough. Resist comparing yourself to everyone else (which is SUPER hard).

      Not sure I’m qualified to be offering advice, but ja.

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