Monthly Archives: April 2011

Happy Blogiversary Contest

So, rather than the usual Monday morning check-in (for those of you following that, it is pretty much the same as it was last week), I thought I would announce the small contest I have put together to celebrate the anniversary of my blog. This will be a writing contest (shocked right?).
The details are listed below.

GENRE: Open
LENGTH: FLASH (less than 1k words)
THEME: Anniversaries
DEADLINE FOR ENTRY: May 26, 2011 (Midnight EST)
PRIZE: 1st place will receive a FREE print copy of Cutlass and Musket: Tales of Piratical Skullduggery (signed by one of the featured authors — that being me)

First and second place entries will be “published” on this blog and will have their story advertised by me on my website, and twitter (so hopefully it should get some readers) All rights remain with the author and they are free to submit or post elsewhere at their discretion.

Entries can be mailed to rebecca(at)rebeccahartwriting(dot)com

Looking forward to reading some interesting entries.

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Happy Anniversary

I just noticed today while surfing the net that April 19th marked the one year anniversary of this blog. One year since I started to take writing seriously enough to start submitting work and opening myself up to possible rejection.

In looking back, I have to say I have grown immeasurably as a writer over the past year, learned a ton, and reached a few milestones as well. I think I will offer some sort of contest to celebrate this auspicious occassion. I’ll need a bit to think on this, but will give you all some info in the next few days.

In the meantime, Happy Anniversary to The Machenwood Chronicles and Other Tales!

Wednesday Morning Check-in

Welp — Monday came and went with no check in post from me this week.  The picture to the left illustrates what my week has been like.

Because I promised myself I would stick to this. Here is my TO DO List for this week:

1. Still waiting on replies for submissions already out. Waiting on replies from Boulevard Magazine (still) and have also subbed pieces to Pulp Empire’s Pirates anthology and some shorts to Vestal Magazine and Short Story America.

2. Work on Machenwood – This one is serious for me this week. I have pushed aside some muse tickles for other stories. I WILL finish this one. It is now the front burner piece.

3. Continue social networking efforts. – This is just an ongoing process. So far, so good. Up to 75 followers on twitter and my blog follow list is growing in slow increments.

4. Catch up on critiques and reading lists on Scribophile and Writer’s Digest. With work being such a bear this week, with training a new hire and all that, I have fallen behind on this particular activity.

5. This weekend I will be looking at travel trailers as I need to pick one up for this summer. I managed to get a seasonal campsite at one of the local campgrounds, so will hopefully spend a good amount of time this summer enjoying the outdoors with the family.

All this is in addition to the usual stuff, like laundry, cleaning up after my daughters, and the always present mom-taxi duties.

Most of the others in my writing circles are also parents– maybe not single ones, but still — busy to be sure. Yet we manage to juggle work, family, and writing, (some I know are even tackling the debut of first novels)- not to mention keeping up with each other and critiquing their work when possible. How do we do it all and remain sane? (wait…was I sane before?)

BOOK REVIEW: On Writing by Stephen King

On WritingOn Writing by Stephen King

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Absolutely fantastic –full of helpful tips and ideas. All of this offered in a nicely comedic presentation full of personal experiences. A great book for anyone who ever considers writing as a career.

View all my reviews

How to Get Rejected

Yesterday I subbed out a flash piece I wrote called “Leaving Eric”. The story is about a woman named Brenda telling us how she left her boyfriend/husband Eric.

I happened to be browsing Duotrope and came across a Husband and Wives theme and I thought, “Meh, that might work.” I checked it out, and Woohoo! — accepting flash length works. “I’m in!”

Today I got what has to be the BEST rejection a writer could ever receive. I have included it below. I would happily of included the name of the kind editor, but I do not know what sort of etiquette would apply to a situation of that sort.

Anyway, here is what I got in my email. (A 1 day response — love the no waiting thing *cough* Boulevard Mag *cough*)

Hi, Rebecca, I just wanted to let you know that I really liked your submission, “Leaving Eric” – the end was satisfying and clever in a macabre sort of way – but unfortunately I’m not going to be able to take it for the “Husbands and Wives” themed issue. It was sure a “finalist” (actually there are two folders we put submissions after initial reading, “Sorry” and “Hotlist,” and yours made it to “Hotlist”), but it just didn’t work for the mix I’ve chosen. But if it’s any consolation I wanted to tell you how much I admired your writing and hope you’ll continue to submit to NAME WITHHELD.

Thank you, Editor. You really made my day. 🙂

Monday Morning Check-In

Here we are at yet another Monday. It is amazing to me how quickly the week goes by sometimes.

This is my To Do list for this week:

1. Still waiting to hear from Boulevard magazine. Duotrope says I should be hearing in the next week or so — at least based on the average response time. Man, I hope so. I feel like they have had it forever.

2. Posted the final version of Ellie’s tale to my crit group. So once the feedback comes in, I will be subbing that out for the anthology call for submissions and crossing my fingers.

3. Machenwood. With the short story basically complete, it is time for Ana and Ric to get some attention.

4. Take a look at Duotrope for upcoming themes that I find interesting.

5. Continue working on social networking.

6. Subbed my flash piece – “Leaving Eric” out — (to Pedestal magazine’s Husband and Wives issue) so I have another pub to wait for a reply from.

Not a bad list this week. It looks like I may actually accomplish some of these writing goals. One foot in front of the other.

On a side note — WELCOME BACK SPRING!!

Thursday Humor

Thankfully, this is not what happens on my favorite critique circle at Scribophile. (shameless plug for the best critique site I have found to date)

Happy Writing and Critiquing!

Monday Morning Check-In

This looks like me at the office (just so you know)

Welp, here we are at week #2 of my track your own progress and follow your TO DO list efforts.

This is what we have on the burners for this wonderful week.

1. Still waiting to hear back from Boulevard magazine. (2 months and counting). This particular magazine is listed on the Most Challenging Fiction Markets — but I didn’t think they meant the surviving the wait part of the process – heh.

2. Finish the first Draft of The Call of The Sea:Ellie’s Tale — I managed to get part 2 down this past week, so it is on to the climax section. (my favorite part)  I have to have the draft done so I can get to the editing before the submit deadline (which is 4/15/11)

3. Continuing efforts to stay connected via social networking sites (Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, etc) While I am still new at much of this, things are moving ahead slowly. I have some new blog followers and actually have managed about 30 followers on twitter this week. Baby steps 🙂

4. Get back to work on Machenwood — This is the big one for me this week. Ana, my MC, is just starting to whisper in my ear again, so I am really hoping to get myself past Chapter 18 this week.

5. Read On Writing, by Stephen King

Looks like another busy week.  Happy writing, everyone!