Here's the round-up of stories I suggested over on my social media last week. Enjoy!
Seen Small Through Glass by Premee Mohammed was published by Fireside Fiction this month.
Unknown Number by Amanda Tong was published as a part of Santa's Secret Pen '21 prompt exchange.
Constelación Magazine published Unforgettable by Eduargo Martínez Báez, Translated by Toshiya Kamei in 2021.
Seven more stories for your weekly reading! Enjoy.
My Body by J.S. Jordon was published by Fireside Fiction in January.
Phases of the Moon by Alice Towey published by Fireside Fiction in 2021.
Beobeto Teketeke by JL Akagi was published by The Dread Machine in 2021.
Anathema Magazine published To Rise, Blown Open by Jen Brown in 2021.
Posted a little late with a back-dated time. My Newsletter went out this week! If you don't catch all these blog posts or just want a highlight of stories, be sure to sign up. Every couple months I will send you my favorites out of a large listing.
Fireside Fiction published Those We See at the Twilight Bridge by Wendy Nikel in 2021.
Lightspeed Magazine published Story Kit by Kij Johnson in 2020, originally published in Eclipse Four in 2011.
Welcome to my fifty-fourth short fiction round-up! Please enjoy the seven stories this week.
Song of the Balsa Wood Bird by Katherine Quevedo was published this month by Fireside Fiction.
Cosmic Roots and Eldritch Shores published Ghost Blue, Ghost Red by Malda Marlys in 2021.
Starting in Fall of 2020, I posted short fiction I'd been reading on my Twitter. Just about a year ago, I started posting story suggestions every day. It wasn't until February that I started posting round-ups here of the stories. I generally post weekly, but I posted nearly daily at first to catch-up. Here's to another year of daily story posting.
This week I suggested seven more stories in my daily story suggestion on Twitter and Facebook. Here's a summary.
On New Year's Day 2021, I posted what I thought were reasonable goals for my reading. They turned out to be overly ambitious.
I will include unpublished work in my book counts but I need to figure out how to remember them. But I will aim to read at least one published book a month as well.
I will post a quarterly reading reflection.
This wraps up my disappointing reading reflection for the year 2021 and my vague reading goals for 2022.
2021 wrapped up, but my daily short story recommendations on social media keep on with a blog summary every week. Here we go!
I, Cthulu, or, What's A Tentacle-Faced Thing Like Me Doing In A Sunken City Like This (Latitude 47° 9' S, Longitude 126° 43' W)? by Neil Gaiman was reprinted by Tor.com in December.
Apex Books & Apex Magazine published First Snow by Annie McAndrew in thier December Microfiction Patreon.
In late November, Amalie/A.R. Frederiksen posted a tweet about a short story exchange.
It's me. I'm stuck in the query trenches where writing had lost its joy. And this exchange seemed perfect to get my writing joy back. I followed the thread instructions and sent off my prompt. On December 1, I received my prompt.
I found writing in the week between Christmas and New Year's to be rejuvenating and fun. I produced a 2150-word story that I hope my Santa's Secret Pen 2021 partner will love!
Mel Grebing received my prompt and produced a sweet little tale about a relationship in the lab space called Mistakes and Resolutions.
Time for Magic by Adria Bailton
The horse plodded forward, its foreleg breaking the snowdrifts with power. Chelsea yanked at the lining of her hood, pulling it farther forward to protect her face from the fat falling flakes. She’d numbed to the chill hours ago. Who needed warming spells when she could just freeze away all feeling? The horse snorted as if it agreed with her assessment.
“That’s a good boy, Roger.” She leaned forward and patted the chestnut’s neck. “It’s not far now.”
It's the last Friday of the year and time to assess my success at meeting my writing goals for the year and set new goals for 2022!
I posted my original goals at the end of 2020, and two updates-one in April and the other in August.
Short Stories Written and Polished in 2021:
My goal for 2021 was to write and polish thirteen (13) short stories. At the time, I had written and polished four (4) short stories in two months at the end of 2020 and had written more than one novel in 3-6 months in 2019-2020. A little more than one short story written and polished each month seemed feasible. I already had a dozen or more started.
In 2021, I wrote and polished a total of seven (7) stories, falling short of my goal of a baker's dozen. The vast majority of these were written in the first quarter of 2021. Unfortunately, once I started querying my novel, it really stymied my creative flow and I was unable to write much. With everything I had available to edit, one would think I could work on those. But those stories needed many more words written and I was unable to complete them. I did not polish anything once I was back at work in-person full-time. My laptop was broken for most of the second half of the year.
2021 wore on me in ways that 2020 did not.
This goal receives an incomplete ❌
Story Submissions in 2021:
I submitted forty (40) stories this year, exceeding my goal of 39 submissions.
This goal recieves a success! ✔️
Rejections in 2021: My goal was for a 100% rejection rate on my submissions. I like this goal because it keeps me submitting. Plus, I win if I meet it and I win if I don't because it means I had some acceptances.
I received thirty-seven (37) rejections and two (2) acceptances this year.
This goal receives a success! ✔️
Acceptances in 2021:
I do not make acceptance goals because I have no control over those. However, it's the end of the year, and I will report my final numbers. I had two (2) acceptances in 2021.
Published Stories in 2021:
I published four (4) stories in 2021. Two were published by publications, one was published for a short time on my website for the Writer in Motion program, and one was published exclusively in my newsletter.
Stories under consideration at this moment: Seven.
Goal: Short Story Submissions in 2022
I'm pulling this number using some logic, math, and the fact that I managed 40 submissions this year and want to always increase my goals when possible. This is a little less than one submission per week.
Goal: Short Story Rejections in 2022
My goals for 2021 quickly went awry and have changed and morphed throughout the year. I learned how some techiques for querying worked for me and others did not. I also believe now that querying advice from before the pandemic is useful to a certain extent but can set expectations much too high for the landscape now. I'll let you peruse all the Twitter threads about publishing today to draw your own conclusions.
My goals for 2022 are vague to the point of not really being goals at all. Keep querying. Keep editing. Go with the flow.
I like the trimester approach to updating goals. I'll keep you posted and, of course, I'll shout from the rooftops should I become agented or have more stories published.
Writer of spec fic.