Last year, I decided it was time to start placing at least some of my stories into decent paying markets again. I had abandoned submitting in favor of e-publishing my short work, but I decided it was time to give myself a gut check and see if my work had evolved enough in the last couple years to become enticing to professional markets. Particularly the stories of mine that have a more definitive genre and a suitable enough word length.
Only problem is it's hard to find homes for a lot of my short work. Either it's not speculative enough for spec fic publications, or it's too speculative for more mainstream or literary ones. And since my typical short story length is around 8,000 words, they're often too long for a lot of publications that pay by the word. So in most cases, it's just easier for me to release it myself and grow my indie backlist. But a few of my stories fit the bill, so why not give it a go?
Apex Magazine has been at the top of my submissions list for years, alongside Fantasy & Science Fiction and Clarkesworld. The good people at Apex have read several of my stories over the years and rejected them more or less handily every single time. I had an almost with "Singularity," but it just didn't quite make the cut.
So it was with very low expectations I submitted my historical fantasy mash-up, "John Dillinger and the Blind Magician." It had just received its second rejection from two very good markets, but those rejections were actually near misses and very helpful ones, where both editors gave the same reason for why they turned it down. After making the decision to ax that particular darling, I submitted it to Apex, and a week later I received a response I was almost certain would begin with, "Thank you for submitting your story, however after careful consideration . . ."
Instead it read, "Thank you for submitting your story. I would like to purchase it for an upcoming issue."
Wait . . . WHAT?
Now feel free to have a gander at the story! It's up on the Apex website as one of their free reads, but I also highly recommend checking out the rest of their offerings. It's an honor have my name associated with such great talent!
Additionally, in February, you can look for my story "Nectar" in the GRIMM MISTRESSES anthology from the great people at Ragnarok Publications. I get to appear next to three other wonderful female authors, and I was so honored to be invited to submit something for this. We were asked to do a contemporary horror spin on a classic fairy tale. I chose Hansel & Gretel, because it already has a hell of a horror story built into it. I'm looking forward to people getting their hands on this one! Information on ordering and the official release date will be forthcoming. So here's to a year of MOAR SHORT STORIES! I'm about to make another submission to another publication, so fingers crossed.
And while I'm talking about other updates, I have decided 2015 is the year to be a little more experimental and cooperative. My friends and I at DeadPixel Publications will soon be embarking on a cooperative/progressive novel, where we agree on a story premise, and then each of us writes a different chapter. Part of me thinks this is a terrible idea, but another part of me thinks I would really be depriving myself of something different and potentially fun if I didn't do it. So we'll see where that leads us. Between all this and my agent hopefully selling KUDZU in the earlier part of this year, there is a lot to look forward to!