A “Pyr”less Effort

Well, the bad news just keeps on rolling.

Got a rejection e-mail, this time from publisher Pyr.  I’m only waiting on a pass from Ace to officially declare I’m batting .000.

Yes, I’m still on hold from Baen, and no, I have not yet submitted to any small indie markets yet, but once this final, delayed rejection comes in, it puts a cork in my fantasy of being pro-published the traditional way right out the gate.  As for the agent hunt, I’ve submitted to 6 major agencies, targeting their newly listed agents who are actively searching for clients.  So far, I’m 0 for 6.

I’m still engaged in writing, working on Echomancer, “Bumped”, and “ILYAMY” intermittently, but I really had high hopes for A Sword Into Darkness.  I even re-read it this last week and sent it off to another reader who had expressed a fascination with the book.  I think it’s good.  What could be the factor turning editors off about it?  What could I tweak or re-write to make it past those initial gate-keepers?

Ah, well.  I’ve pulled down “Bumped” this week and I’m finishing off a re-write now.  It’ll go off into the aether this weekend, along with “ILYAMY”. Maybe I can put my count of pro-published shorts to 3 or 4.

Any advice from the internets?

 

New Short Story!! “Bumped” Live for the next two weeks! – UPDATED

SORRY, TAKEN DOWN FOR SUBMISSIONS.  THANKS FOR ALL THE COMMENTS AND SUGGESTIONS!!

Thank you, again, to all the folks who contributed to “ILYAMY”.  My hope is to fix it up and get it started on the magazine rejection cycle as soon as possible.  I’ll keep you, dear reader, updated as things unfold.

And now for something completely different.  Where “ILYAMY” was straight-up SF drama and somewhat dark-ish, this new tale is a bit of frothy fun (at least my definition of it).  “Bumped” is an old-school adventure yarn.  Were I forced to pigeon-hole it, I’d classify it as a mad-scientist romance / gadget caper.  If that’s your thing (and how could it NOT be?), I think you’ll get a kick out of it.  It had a little-seen previous version on Baen’s Bar, but I excised about 2000 words and punched it up quite a bit.  It’s now a good bit funner.

As with the last short story in progress, this’ll be up for a couple of weeks and then it will vanish from the internets in order to find its way to a paying market.

Let me know what you think!  Happy Reading!!

A Too-Long Delayed Return

Sorry, Loyal Readers, it’s been a helluva couple of weeks.

Between my last post and today, life has been topsy-turvy.  As many of you may face as well, I’ve been juggling the simultaneous challenges of a new job, new home-ownership, getting used to a pay-cut and new expenses (where the HELL is all my money going every month), and now a cross-country trip and a month-long service school on an out-of-pocket shoestring budget.  I’ve been missing my family and I’ve been unable to re-establish any sort of literary routine.

Then I found out about the tragic death of a friend on the other side of the country.  My pain and my wife’s pain is nothing compared to the pain felt by our friend’s husband or her parents or family, but it is still a pain that we are suffering in relative isolation.  I want nothing more than to hold my wife and comfort her, and she and I want to be there for our friend’s husband (who is also our friend), but there are issues of time, distance, and finance preventing it.  Facebook has been a help in this, but it is not nearly enough.

But I have been writing.  Script work continues on Strategic Deployment, plus I have completed the extensive re-write of ILYAMY.  It is a bit of a maudlin tale, but it matches my mood.  And though it was initially written well before this recent accident that stole away our friend, and has nothing to do with her, it’s title is a poignant enough link.  So I am dedicating this latest short story to the memory of Jackie Price Dunn. 

For the next ten days or so, I’ll have ILYAMY up on the website here.  I hope you’ll read it, I hope you’ll like it, and I hope you’ll send me a note with any comments or suggestions you have for it.  At the end of that time, I’ll be bringing it down, polishing it up, and sending it off to make the magazine acceptance/rejection rounds.  I encourage your thoughts and suggestions.  And thanks for reading and sticking with me.

On The Job Writing

My apologies, as I have been a poor new blog host.

Here I am, with a content-filled outpouring of my unfiltered id, and what do I do? After addicting vast numbers to the sweet honey that is every word I write, I abandon you for an unspecified number of days to do something as tawdry and mundane as work The Job. How could I be so cruel?

Ah, well. Though the particulars of The Job matter little, the hours it fills are not insignificant. I work about a 12 hour shift (easy, he’s only working half a day!), tack on an hour for work spillage, then an hour-to-45-minutes each way for my commute from the Outer Banks to the communist enclave, I mean commonwealth of Virginia and you have a lot of time spent Not Writing. Then, of course, you gotta help the kids with homework, watch an hour of “Justified”, and then patiently explain to your wife why it’s not your turn to do the dishes, when any damn fool knows it is. I go to sleep earlyish or latish, depending on which particular 12 hour shift I’m working, then rise to begin the process all over again.

I’m still getting used to the flow of things and working out The Job vs. home-life, but I trust that it will settle out soon. The good thing is that I only have about a four to five day work week, so I will have a chance to catch up.

Until then, I write on my breaks and at lunch, whenever I can. And I HAVE been writing. I’m currently working a new draft of a new short story “ILYAMY”, thinking about how to progress “Echomancer”, and working on some new side projects for stories already written, notably new life for “Strategic Deployment” and “The Falling Sky”. Good things are coming, and I hope to have the chance to have more fresh content in the next post.

Until then, make sure you’re caught up on the stories and chapters included here. Happy Reading! (and back to The Job!)

Attention On Deck!

At ease, at ease. Everyone please sit down.

Welcome to the Improbable Author, my own blog about writing, life, entertainment, books, movies, and family. If you know me, it’s good to see you again — visit often and tell all your friends. If you are new, then please stay a while, read the short stories and chapters I’ve posted here, try out the Radio Play, browse the posts — and then visit often and tell all your friends.

I know writing blogs are a dime a dozen, but I hope you find something special in mine that brings you back. When I’m not working my day-and-night career in the Navy (henceforth known as The Job) or doing whatever She Who Must Be Obeyed tells me (I love you, sweetie!), then I try to be writing.

I’ve had some success with my short stories, chiefly due to the mentoring found on the Baen’s Bar forum. My main focus now is on novel publication, for either my completed military science fiction manuscript A Sword Into Darkness or my in-progress young adult urban fantasy Echomancer. I’ll have more about all of them in future posts.

So, browse around, follow the blog, and most of all — Happy Reading!!