2019 Statistics

Writing-related numbers from the past year:

  • Novels Developed — 2 (second draft completed for one, first draft completed for another)
  • Fiction Stories Finished and Submitted — 5
  • Published Stories — 2
  • Rejections — 19
  • Non-Fiction Articles Published — 2
  • Gross Income Earned from Writing-Related Jobs — $12,798.72
  • Blog Posts — 106, for an average of a little under 9 per month and slightly over 2 per week
  • Journal Entries — 355 days, 97.2% success rate

And with those numbers close out the year, wishing all my followers a prosperous 2020.

Reaching to Succeed

Blogging is like exercising. If you do it consistently and keep to a schedule of workouts, it becomes routine. But when you break your routine and don’t post to your blog for over a week, getting back is as difficult as dragging your butt back to the gym.

But here I am again, with plans to be less of a stranger going forward.

Since completing NaNoWriMo last month, I’ve been focused on my short fiction, with an ambitious goal of completing and submitting three more stories. That didn’t happen; one awaits a final proofread, I need some time away from the second before its next revision, and the third needs even more time. If I pressed myself, I could still complete the first two by the end of this year… but quality, not quantity, is my primary concern. Which means I’m shutting done the machine of fiction until I return from vacation.

Time now to think about the goal I set for myself early this year for my short stories. After identifying seven stories I’d drafted which I felt had potential, I made the following announcement:

My goal for this year is to revise all seven, and by year’s end begin submitting them to literary journals, genre magazines, fiction contests, online collections — any place that will get my name out there, or at least send a rejection to add to my collection. Party at my place when I reach 100!

Soon after this post, I identified an eighth story draft strong enough to warrant revision. As 2019 winds down, here’s what I’ve accomplished:

  • All eight stories were revised and submitted to either a fiction workshop or writer’s group, and have been further revised after the “peer review” process. Advancing each story to this stage is a signficant accomplishment.
  • Five stories have been completed and submitted
  • Two stories were published in an anthology edited and published by one of my writer’s groups
  • The three stories submitted but not published have garnered 19 rejections so far. Maybe I’ll throw that party sometime this coming summer.
  • I’ll begin submitting the final three in the first quarter of the coming year
  • While I didn’t hit the mark I set for myself, I knew at that time that going from zero completed stories to eight in one year would be a reach. And I now realize how setting the bar so high inspired me to achieve more than I would have had I not been so ambitious.
  • I’ll need to be similarly eager when I set my goals for 2020. But that’s a post for another day, hopefully one not too far into the future.

    One Man’s Junk

    PHOTO PROMPT © Mikhael Sublett

    “Seriously?” Dan said, pointing to the portrait lying on the floor of the demolished office. “You wanna take this junk home?” The long handle of his sledgehammer still resting on his right shoulder, the foreman of the construction team knelt down and examined the portrait, which appeared to be upside-down. It was an ordinary image of an ordinary street in an ordinary European city. “Jesus, it’s so faded you can’t see nothing unless you’re up close,” Dan called. “What you gonna do, hang this in your bathroom?”

    Hank walked past Dan. “I’m taking the frame, dumbass,” he replied without looking.

    I’m still focused on finishing several stories before the end of the year, so I haven’t been taking the time to blog. I can think of no better way to get back in the groove than to participate in Friday Fictioneers once again.