05 June 2011

Post #200: Story a Day Wrap-Up

(Not sure what to say about post #200, except to note it? As some kind of accomplishment? Or something?)

Okay, so...Story a Day in May. A little week three brush with something viral slowed my progress a bit - as did the fact that I was exhausted. Nonetheless, I am super happy with the raw stats:

Raw word count for the month: 50,083. I drafted 19 stories in all. Four of them took me two days or more to write. Two I drafted more than once, since I wasn't happy with the way they came out the first time I tried to write them. Five I am almost certain I can turn into something great. Two or three might be great if I can figure out how to fix major issues with them. One might be the seed of a novella or a novel - maybe my 2011 NaNoWrimo project?

In the next few weeks, I'll be working on getting some of those stories in fighting shape, as well as drafting some new stuff.

Speaking of new stuff...I take it as a good sign that for the first time in a while there is a little cluster of truly great looking anthologies out there, some of which are paying very decent up front cashola for stories. Here's what I've come up with:

Machine of Death: Deadline July 15 2011; pays $200 per story.
From the website submission guidelines:

Machine of Death is an anthology of short stories with a shared premise.... All stories in the book start with the idea of a machine that can use a blood test to tell you how you’re going to die — sometimes vaguely, but always accurately.

For more info or to purchase a copy of the book or download your free pdf copy of the first volume, check out the website.

The Mothman Files: Deadline July 1 2011; pays 5¢ per word.
You might remember Mothman from the muddled film starring Richard Gere that came out a bunch of years ago, but John Keel's 1975 book The Mothman Prophecies is a well-researched classic in the paranormal field, and ongoing Mothman or Mothman-like sightings continue to this day. Editor Michael Knost invites submissions of fictional works on the Mothman theme.

The Memory Eater: Deadline July 15 2011; pays an equal share in profits on POD and e-book sales.
Editor Casper Pearl calls for stories involving the "Memory Eater—an orb-like device that fits neatly around your head like a diver’s helmet with the ability to locate and destroy any memory in the human mind."

After reading Deborah Walker's post on the Merry Month of May, I was reminded of this call for stories:

Enchanted Conversation's Cinderella Issue: Submission Period June 27-30; pays 10¢ per  word
This excellent online magazine publishes fiction based on beloved fairy tales. Read their Rumpelstiltskin issue for free to see what they're up to.

I don't know about you, but with such juicy and fun premises, I feel inspired to write.

What are you working on this June?


Cate Gardner said...

You did fantastically. I gave up on short story month about half way through.

Luanne G. Smith said...

19 stories? Very impressed. And fifty thousand words is fantastic. Good to hear you have some gems in there.

Unknown said...

Nice job in May!

I want to submit a Cinderella story, but the only one I have going will be a struggle to get under Enchanted Conversation's 2000 word upper limit.

I might switch focus to novels now that my short story project is done for my degree.

Deborah Walker said...

That is an awesome word count. Fabulous.

I've got my beady eye on 'Machine of Death II', too. I love the fact that they gave away a free pdf of the first volume. Great stories in there.

As for June, I really need to stock up my poetry inventory, so it's a poetry month for me. Ah, lovely.

Elizabeth Twist said...

@Cate: Thanks! If I do the challenge again, I might set my mind on doing two weeks' worth of stories in May and sparing time for other things. After the halfway point, I found I went into zombie mode for a while there. (Not writing zombie stories...just staring into space like a zombie.)

Thanks, LG! I am glad to have survived.

@Eileen: for this reason I am writing from scratch. I have a simple enough premise. Even so, my stories tend to sit at the 3k mark.

"I might switch focus to novels now that my short story project is done for my degree."

Your what is done for your what? Oh wow. Congratulations! That is huge. Have you submitted it to your committee or whatever yet? Do you have to do some kind of defense? Will there be a parade?

@Deborah: I am more and more tempted to play with poetry. I mean, why not? That MoD book is amazing. It's reminding me of why I loved existentialism when I first encountered it. Definitely worth an attempt.

Unknown said...

defense, no. parade, yes.


Anonymous said...


I'm working on the following things for June, so far:
1) Getting ready to go to the Kansas workshop.
2) Rewriting 'Harry and Mars' for the Kansas workshop.
3) Revising "Won't somebody think of the children" for my Createspace proof."

Unknown said...

hope you canadian horror writers also saw this one:

Annie Neugebauer said...

Wow, that's very impressive! And what a great round-up of anthologies, too. Thanks for that, and congrats on your month's success!