People are creatures of habit, sure, some of us more than others, and, I’ve found, authors even more more so than others. We like things to happen in a certain way; we have specific times for writing, for editing, for whatever else we might do. I, personally, am very big on systems, and in I have a set method for doing things and I find it difficult to do things outside of these arbitrary rules I’ve placed on myself. But, you know, these last few years or so, my systems have been working, so you can bet I’m going to stick with them.
Recently, I decided to make Mondays sort of a Reset Day. It’s the beginning of a new week, so I sort of wipe the slate of the last week clean and start fresh. I’ll start reading a new book, which hopefully balances out because I strive to finish a book each week, thus replenishing the supply because of course I can’t just read one book at a time. I’ll start a new story to add to my pile of Current Projects, which could get a little dangerous down the road if I don’t finish some of the Current Projects, but, hey, I have a system in place for that, too. I’ll track my weight progress, and I will always make an update post here on the blog, ensuring that there’s at least one new post per week. So here’s my look at things going into this week:
So, this week, I’ve started reading Everything is Illuminated by Jonathan Safran Foer. It’s off to a good start so far, and it’s been on my TBR list for quite some time, because it’s always so highly acclaimed. Last week, I finished up 2nd Chance by James Patterson, which I mostly read because it was there, as I’ve never been a fan of Patterson, but, hey, I actually didn’t completely hate it, so there’s that. This week, I hope to finish Galapagos by Kurt Vonnegut, which I’ve read before and really loved before, too. I’ve heard some Vonnegut fans don’t particularly like this book, but I find it fascinating. I feel like I enjoyed it a little more the first time I read it, though.
On the writing front, the new story I started is an idea for an epic fantasy quest that sparked up into my head on yesterday’s walk through the Waterfall Glen Nature Preserve trail that I’ll be expanding on in a future post. I don’t particularly have any pieces I plan on finishing this week, but I’ve got my eye on a few approaching deadlines.
I did, however, get another piece accepted! I received an offer this morning from the Saturday Evening Post to have my short story, “The Alley,” featured in their New Fiction Friday series. That, like my Potter’s Field Six submission, is slated to be published in October. This particular story is a great example of never giving up. It’s a speculative fiction piece, and I had been sending it to a lot of spec fic journals, only to receive rejection after rejection. I decided maybe it wasn’t “Spec Fic” enough for the spec fic guys, resigned it to a sort of magical realism literary fiction category, and branched out to the more general literary journals, and look at it now! It just goes to show that you shouldn’t put your work in a strictly defined box. Let it branch out and explore other places, even if you don’t think it’s likely it’ll be welcome there. And patience is important, too. While a lot of my recent acceptances have been very lucky and have gotten in on the first or second try, “The Alley” was rejected ten times before someone finally appreciated its merit. A lot of this business is just finding the right editor at the right time.
With my weight monitoring and exercising, I got in a two walks to far this weekend, one of them short, the other my big 10 mile trek around Waterfall Glen, and I plan to take another small one again today. Saturday will be my next day off, so there will be a 10 mile day for that, too. My weight went up by a pound, which I’m not too concerned about, since my weight has pretty much been stagnant through the month of July. I’d like to see some decrease there, but we’ll see how August and more time to exercise now that I’m more steadily part time at work pan out.
It being a new month also means trying to hit the trail hard on selling at least one of my books this month, and since this month is August, I’ll also be trying to convince everyone and their mothers to submit to World Unknown Review Volume III. Please, please, please, if you have a story, send it my way. If you know people who have stories, send them my way! I want another great collection that keeps improving on the previous ones, and I can’t do that without stories. Share the love, spread the word, send me your delicious, delicious work.
That’s my week in an admittedly big nutshell. What have you got planned going into this first week of August?