I do have an academic article that is scheduled to be published this summer . . . of course there is bad news in the academic publishing industry, one of the distributors has gone bankrupt . . . but anyway that is supposed to some out in July or August. I do a have a little bit of additional research to do and some revising, but that is nearly done. I will keep this blog posted as to when I am done, when I have submitted, and when it is published.
Besides that, I am turning to short story writing. This is as a result of my Na No Wri Mo writing group, but also as a result of three publishing opportunities I have noted of late. Two were directly from the Na No Wri Mo forum site, which were zines that are publishing Na No excerpts in upcoming issues. One is Bow Wow, which is an extant publication, and the other is a new zine. Between the two, I will submit different excerpts from my (by then, completed) Na No Wri Mo novel, and hope that 1 will be published. You never know. There is a chance. Both will pay in copies, which is all I am looking for, for the time being. I have a job, a good job, don't tell anyone but I actually have a pretty great job. So being paid to write is not what I crave, being published is not EVEN what I crave, but writing good stuff is what I crave. Publication is a verification, an outside source giving a "thumbs up" to my writing, but that is not the goal, it can not be the goal. One of the things I heard someone from the publication industry say recently was "more people need to write things, but fewer people need their things published." I think the dichotomoy between publishing and writing are useful. I do not have my brain around the distinctions yet, and would not want to remain unpublished all my life long days, but for now I have to keep the items separate in my own mind. I hope that I can write that way, and think that way. Paradigms are hard things to shift.
A second writing option is the short story magazine called "The First Line." The premise is for every story in each issue to write a story with the same opening line. They have all four lines for 2003 (it is a quarterly publication) established on their site. So this gives me four potential whort stories to write this year. I will have Na No Wri Mo assignments for the writers group, and if I can double dip these assignments, that would be a good thing. The first lines for the year are: "Paul Fischer was a graduate student studying biochemistry at Emory when he met my mother," -- to be submitted by February 1; "The view from up here is incredible and makes me feel ___ (fill in the blank) -- to be submitted by May 1; "'So, all of it was just a lie?'" -- with the quotations, to be submitted by August 1; and "I opened my e-mail with a mix of apprehension and excitement" -- to be submitted by November 1. I actually like the last one, as I can probably work it into or off of one of my novels in progess, about an online relationship. So that one is actually possible. The one for February may not get done, that is a pretty tight deadline, but the ones for May and August are also possibilities. I like the August one more, so I get 6 months to write one and 9 months to write the other. But I still want to try to write the May one, and maybe even the January one.
I also may revise my last Na No Wri mo short story, and maybe try to submit it to some mags this year, as well. It is not great by any stretch of the imagination, but with some revision it may be publishable. You never know. As a matter of fact, to be quite technical, you never know if you don't submit. So one must submit in order to be rejected, which will let one grow into good enough of a writer in order to be accepted. So that is another item on the list of things to revise. And it is getting to be an awfully long list.
The writing opportunity -- although it won't be credited -- is the online open source encyclopedia, "Wikipedia." I am considering submitting some articles on things I know, and even on more obscure things that I just barely know. I love the concept, love the idea, love the community aspect of it all, and may get myself up for a few submissions. Any and all things I write for them will be dutifully recorded here as well. One of the keys to this blog is that any writing is good writing, and all writing counts towards the daily goal of one thousand words. So anything I can do that counts as writing counts here as writing. We will have to see what happens.