I posted a summary of 2020 and goals for 2021 at the end of December. We are one-third of the way through the year, and it seems like a great time to do an update of meeting my goals.
Polishing a story to submission: By now I should have four new stories done to stay on target for thirteen by the end of the year. I have five!
Submitting stories: I have submitted fifteen pieces thus far in 2021, which is two more than my time-tracked goal!
Rejections: I have received exactly the amount of rejections if they were to come in like submission. However, I happen to have two acceptances this year. So I'm quite happy with this!
I got trapped in a quagmire with Author Mentor Match and my novel. After mentee selections were announced (and I was not one), I realized I was using mentorship programs and revising as a way to procrastinate sending out my novel to agents and pursuing publication. After talking at lengh with a critique partner and attending Flights of Foundry, I got myself organized and started querying agents.
My goal had been to query five agents per month (starting after the AMM announcement) with a partial/full request rate of 10%. However, the implementation of that goal didn't end up working for me. (Also, it would mean I should have queried fifteen agents at this point and another five by the end of next week.) Instead, only about two weeks ago, I put together my list and queried sixteen agents since. My plan is to keep about a dozen queries out at any given time until my list is complete or everyone closes. I try to send out a new query every time a rejection comes in. However, the 8-day of query out mark was rough with four rejections coming in within about 24-hours of each other and I did not have more querying in me. I will try to get more out this weekend to get back up to a dozen queries out.
Still hoping for that 10% request rate, I received a partial request within my first eight queries. I've modified the goal that it should be a 10% request rate amongst rejections/assumed pass due to time passing. (Therefore, as of this moment I have three more rejections before I need to consider reworking my query package - ie general query letter, first pages, synopsis, etc.)
This is somehow a first third of the year and only two week update with also the immediacy of what I'm doing right now reported. To date I have queried sixteen agents, recieved one partial request, and six rejection including on the partial request. This marks me as on-target for my novel goals.
While that novel is in the querying trenches, I need to make some decisions about the novel-in-two-parts, the one-in-progress, and new novels.
Normally I only post short fiction in this round-up, but there are two essays I read or re-read this week that I am posting along with the fiction. I've placed them after the seven short fiction pieces.
Brightly, Undiminished by Sarah Grey was published in March by Lightspeed Magazine.
Read or listen to Keeping House by Sarah Day at Pseudopod, also from March.
Bite by KC Shaw is published at Daily Science Fiction.
The final entry to this week's round-up is a youtube video where you can listen to Cat Rambo read from her essay on Mentors, Mentees, and Mentorship in the Pocket Workshop from Hydra House. This will be of most interest to speculative fiction writers.
I have six stories for you this week ranging in publication from 2003 to 2021.
Downstairs, Upstairs by Melissa Mead was published in 2013 by Fireside Fiction.
I've got seven stories for your reading pleasure this week!
The Modern Witch's Recipe for Enemy Pie by Elizabeth Cobbe is published at Daily Science Fiction.
Fireside Fiction published Diamonds and Pearls by JL George, a 13-minute read.
I Can Be a Hero Too by Carol Scheina is published at Daily Science Fiction.
Another seven wonderful stories are here for your weekly reading enjoyment!
The Sand Dollar by Alyssa Erichsen is published at Lunch Ticket.
Must Sign for Delivery by Jade Walker is published at Smokelong Quarterly.
Daily Science Fiction published Found in Translation by J. Kosakowski.
Apex Magazine published The Ace of Knives by Tonya Liburd, a 14-minute read.