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Senior Pooch to the rescue!

Boo Boo enjoying a day of leisure

Howdy crew!

I’m still kicking and more importantly still writing.  No big news from the publishing side of things yet, but I continue to put pen to paper.  The day gig creeps in quite a bit these days, but that’s my problem, eh?

In addition to working on fiction, I recently launched a new blog, dedicated to my love for senior dogs. Boo Boo, my border collie/flat-coated retriever, passed earlier this year somewhere north of 13 years old.  It was rough, because we had come quite a ways together. He has been found as a stray and there were a lot of indications that he was abused in his former life based upon his mental state when I got him, but happily we worked through a lot of the bumps together.

Fast friends

A month after I laid him to rest I got Rusty. Rusty’s a troublemaker.  Rusty doesn’t get along well with other dogs.  He’s aggressive.  It wasn’t untrue.  He had some issues, but I saw something.  It was that same nervousness that Boo Boo had, but Rusty wasn’t going to take crap from anyone.  Several weeks of socialization and lots of training later, and… well, he’s not quite the model citizen, but he not only gets along with almost every dog he meets, but even those that are more excitable calm down after they get a chance to know each other.

Trust me folks, I’m no Dog Whisperer, but I took this opportunity to launch SeniorPooch.com as part public service announcement about all of the good that comes from owning a senior dog, part homage to Boo Boo, and part photo diary of my new adventures with Rusty.  So far the reception is blowing me away.  If dogs are your thing, whether or not you’ve had an old one, you might be interested in adopting a new dog, but are unsure of how old is too old, or just want a peek into another of my passions, come check it out.  So far, I’m having a lot of fun with it.

 

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Whazzzup?

It’s been more than a little while, so I wanted to check in to let you all know what’s been happening.

The short of it is that I’ve been reading, writing, reviewing, editing, revising, rinsing, and repeating.

Reading: Plenty of short stories by a variety of horror writers.  Much of it has been good, or at very least to my liking.  The best comes from early work by Ramsey Campbell.  If you like Lovecraft, but wish it was a bit more contemporary or accessible, check out Campbell.

Writing: I’ve been focusing on my short game to the extreme.  I’m shopping around a flash fiction piece that I just finished and have a few other ideas with potential that I’m considering moving on next.

Reviewing: As part of the Mighty Pandora’s Box Online Writing Group, I’ve been reviewing plenty of quality fantasy, horros, and sci-fi.

Revising/Rewriting: Once the last round of rejects came back at the end of 2010, I decided I was going to read everything that hasn’t been accepted with a critical mind.  The results are that I’ve sliced and diced more of my previously “untouchable” lines than I thought possible.

I’ll have more to say soon, but for now, it’s back to work.

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Ongoing genre market research

In between short story writing, my research of genre writing markets continues.

Apex, Beneath Ceaseless Skies, Asimov’s, Analog, and Heroic Fantasy Quarterly are just a handful of titles that I find myself going back to time and again for entertainment and inspiration.  All are interesting and have their own voice.

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Hurts so good

Every once and a while you're going to get a black eyeToday, I picked up a rejection for one of the stories that I’m shopping around.

Correction.  I received another rejection.

As a writer, if you’re out there trying to get your work recognized, rejection is one of the things that you need to get used to.  There have been times when it’s been easier for me to give this advice than to follow it myself.  No matter how much you think you are ready for the rejection, it still stings a bit, especially when it comes in a form letter.

I’ve received a handful of these, so I was ready for this one.*  I’m not satisfied that I wasn’t able to find the right market/write well enough to get into this market/etc. but there are plenty of other fish in the sea, and I have no doubt that this isn’t as much of a setback, as an opportunity to become a better fisherman.

With that in mind searched my records for top markets that I thought that the story would work best in and sent it back out within 24 hours.

Next up – Rewrite another story doesn’t quite fit into any of the markets I’ve read so far.

Note: * – This is in no way reconciliation that I’ve figured it all out.  If you should see me at a Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf in San Diego, beating my head into my laptop please be nice.

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How much is too much?

Scott Nicholson (http://hauntedcomputer.blogpost.com) has an interesting post on the potential impact on the publishing industry with all of the new avenues that writers have for getting their work out there.

Check it out here: http://hauntedcomputer.blogspot.com/2010/07/readers-as-slush-pile-slaves.html

I’m very much in agreement with him.  I don’t see an issue with all of the new work being put out there.  I give a writer a couple of pages to reel me in.  Usually it’s a couple of pages if I’m in a book store, or whatever sample they’ve provided via Kindle.  That’s my purchase decision.  If I’m still digging what I’m reading after 75-100 pages, I’m going all the way.  If not, its gone.

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