New Year's Resolutions

Okay, it's been a while.

New Baby News
Eden Joel Moan arrived in October, weighing in at a healthy 8lb 40z, before giving us a few fraught weeks as he was readmitted to hospital a couple of times after getiing himself all weak and feeble, but he's fine now (apart from lingering colic) and his weight continues to move in the right direction.

Open University News
Got my results just before Christmas for my Creative Writing (A215) course: Grade 2 Pass. Just a few percent short of a Distinction, but I'm happy with that. Next course will be Advanced Creative Writing starting in September '08.

Writing News
Not a great deal of success really, but then my mind has been on other things (see above!). I have managed to sell 'The Glamour' to Niteblade, my second contribution to this new and vibrant ezine. Also had my story 'Intervention' selected as one of the best of stories for the last quarter at Bewildering Stories. And my story 'The Devil's Bones' has passed its initial reading at Whispers of Wickedness and is now being considered for the print magazine of that famed instituion. Whispers don't pay contributors, but the mag has garnered such a good reputation in the small press that being published in its pages brings with it some serious kudos. (I've probably jinxed it now!) My 'weird western' story 'Inheritance' is still under consideration at Interzone. It was submitted during their last email sub period, November.

New Year, New Goals
Well, actually, they're the same goals I have in the back of my mind week in, week out. But I'm going to put them down here in the hope that it will spur me on to actually achieve some of them. (In the interests of honesty, these aren't my actual NY Ressies. They're taken from the excellent blog of crime writer JA Konrath, entitled A Newbie’s Guide to Publishing. They're pertinent and better than I could've come up with, so I'm 'aving them!)

And they are:

1) I will start/finish the damn book
2) I will always have at least three stories on submission, while working on a fourth
3) I will attend at least one writer's conference, and introduce myself to agents, editors, and other writers
4) I will subscribe to the magazines I submit to
5) I will join a critique group. If one doesn't exist, I will start one at the local bookstore or library
6) I will finish every story I start
7) I will listen to criticism
8) I will create/update my website
9) I will master the query process and find an agent
10) I'll quit procrastinating in the form of research, outlines, synopses, taking classes, reading how-to books, talking about writing, and actually write something
11) I will refuse to get discouraged, because I know JA Konrath wrote 9 novels, received almost 500 rejections, and penned over 1 million words before he sold a thing--and I'm a lot more talented than that guy.

There we are. I've already started on Number 4 - my Christmas pressie from my wife was a year's subscription to Black Static. What a great wife I have. And of course, I'm doing Number 8 right now.

My best wishes to you all. Have a fantastic New Year.
(I'll return to these resolutions in the near future, see how far I get.)


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