julesjones: (Default)
I have, as usual, been taking part in PicoWrimo, for values of "taking part in" that include being too busy getting in my 200 words a day to participate in the comm itself most days. I've been even worse than usual this time round because the day job is well and truly eating my brain, to the point where I dropped my "hope to reach" target to 200 words a day because I knew 300 wasn't realistic.

It has, however, been successful as usual in getting me to get actual words down on page. For June Pico I wrote at least 200 words a day every single day on the current novel length work-in-progress. I was all set to continue with this in July, but on the 2nd of July Loose Id posted an internal call for submissions asking for wedding sequels to gay romance novels in the catalogue which didn't already have a wedding. As occasionally happens, the first line appeared in my brain while I was on my way to work that morning and insisted that I write the rest of the story. On 8 July a 6200 word wedding story for Nice Tie went off to the beta readers, and on 9 July it went off to my editor (who is still thinking about it).

Strangely enough, my hands hurt after that. I've still managed to write something every day, but it's been using Dragon to dictate a rough outline for a short and notes for some story ideas. Dragon is extremely useful, but it's hard work for fiction, and really does change my voice, so in general I don't find it worthwhile to try to write manuscript with it if there are notes I could be writing.
julesjones: (Default)
I've been busy this weekend. The story at Musa isn't offically reverted until the 28th, but I sent it off to an editor friend on Friday night, followed by the reversion letter once I had my mitts on it on Saturday morning. Since it's a reprint this will probably come to naught, but I'm not going to have the time or energy to do anything about self-publishing it for some months, and it may come in useful if she needs a short at short notice.

I then spent some considerable time wrestling with Word 2013, which is the iteration installed on my new computer. It isn't much like Word 2010, which is the version I occasionally reluctantly prodded with a stick on the old machine, and is utterly unlike the Word 2003 I am obliged to use at work, let alone my dearly beloved Lotus Word Pro. I think I could eventually get used to it, but it was a somewhat traumatic experience getting the other two items for submission into a modern file format. Auto-format did some decidedly odd things to the novella file I'd exported from Word Pro to Word 2003 file format. Importing the individual chapter files in .txt format for the novel submission went moderately smoothly once I'd worked out what the file import command was called and where to find it in the shiny new (to me) ribbon.

The novella was the new thing I've been whining about for the last month. It did eventually creep to the 20k mark, but I've still sent it to the market I was eying when I thought it was going to be 17k. Contemporary m/m erotic romance, and oh so hurt/comfort.

The novel... The novel last went out on submission as treeware to a couple of mainstream SF houses. The novel also got an agent's attention prior to that. The agent said he couldn't sell it, but he wanted to see the next thing I wrote. The next thing I wrote was a romance novel. And the next one after that. And... you can see where this is going. The novel has romantic elements, but it is not a romance. Then I got the extended bout of medical issues and stopped writing at all for some years. And in the meantime more small presses have come along, and one of them looks like it might be a good fit. So that went off as well today.

And now I should get back to the novel I was 30k into when I felt the urge to fiddle with the novelette and turn it into a novella...
julesjones: (Default)
Email this morning to say that Nice Tie has been accepted by Loose Id, subject to the usual tweaks. :-) So the rest of my free time this week is going to be taken up with reading the fine print on contract paperwork, as I've out of circulation for so long that all of the paperwork is different now.
julesjones: (Default)
Just sent off a short story submission to an erotic romance anthology. This is one I've had for a while but never found a home for -- too short to publish as a standalone ebook, not really enough sex for erotica markets, and never hit the theme of erotic romance anthologies I'd seen. But there are a couple of calls open now or coming up that it might suit, so trying my luck with the first one...
julesjones: (Default)
Beta comments on Nice Tie came back from Alex, so this evening I've tweaked a couple of things, re-set the file into submission formatting, and just sent it off to my editor. It feels rather odd to send off something novel-length, after five years of nothing but a couple of short story submissions. Fingers crossed she likes it.
julesjones: (Default)
I spent a large chunk of yesterday afternoon editing the rough draft of the urban confessions story down from 6100 to 5000 words, and sent it off to Predatrix last night for comments. She seems to think it works, so after another quick typo hunt, I spent a large chunk of this afternoon formatting it according to the anthology editor's guidelines -- which include the requirement to provide a short blurb.

I hate writing blurbs. I believe I have mentioned this before.

Also, I only use MSWord at home when I have no other choice, and while I use it at work, we're still on 2003 at work and I have the ribbon-infested 2007 at home, which results in much swearing every time I have to use the wretched thing and can't find where they've put assorted standard functions. However, the file is on its way to the editor's inbox. If she doesn't like it, I shall probably add some material and self-publish it at Smashwords, at which point I may have to consider setting up a new pseudonym.

It was fun writing fluffy porn, but it was rather noticeable that I had to make a determined effort to stop it from picking up more plot than fluffy porn needs. I could probably get a rather longer story out of it without much effort. Nevertheless, I would like to point out to my usual editor that I can so write a short story that *stays* a short story. :^) Even if not very often...

(If any of you feel the urge to write a confessions story, more details at the editor's website: http://www.writerotica.co.uk/guidelines.htm )
julesjones: (Default)
Had an email to say that my short story A Sparrow Flies Through has been accepted for Maxim Jakubowski's Mammoth Book of Erotic Quickies. :-)

Had an email a couple of weeks ago, which I only saw last night courtesy of an email whoopsie... Fortunately I managed to get the electronic file to him just in time, so it's still in the anthology.

Seriously chuffed about this, because I have enormous respect for Maxim Jakubowski, and have long had an ambition to get onto the ToC for one of his anthologies.
julesjones: (Default)
And just as I finished dictating the previous post, I received an e-mail from Penumbra, rejecting Ghost Train 73 days after submission. However, it had made it past the initial cut, and it's a "please submit to us again" rejection. So while I would've liked to have found a home for this story, I'm not too dejected.
julesjones: (Default)
Received an email late last night to say that Musa's Erato imprint has accepted "And if I offered thee a bargain". :-) With the inevitable editorial caveats, of course... That could be fun, as I don't disagree with the reason for the editing request, but will need to be careful that the necessary fiddling won't throw off other aspects of the story.

Reprint of a 5.5 kword short story, as far as I know to be published as a standalone. No idea at this stage when it'll be released
julesjones: (Default)
Received an email this morning to say that my short story submission to Penumbra had been passed on for the next round for consideration, and that it would be a while before I heard anything further. (They do multiple passes on submissions as they start to firm up the story line-up for the issue.) So at least it was considered a good enough match for what they want to be retained for further consideration. :-)
julesjones: (Default)
This time a joint effort with [livejournal.com profile] predatrix. Trouser Trap is exactly 5 kwords and m/m, which fits a call for submissions for a series of mini-anthology ebooks, so we hauled it out this afternoon and prodded it a bit. My esteemed co-author wrote a blurb for it, and I've just done the cover letter and sent it on its way.

It's slapstick sex comedy. I'm not sure if that's *quite* what Ye Editor is looking for this time round, but she bought the last thing we sent her, so she must have some appreciation of our sense of humour. :-)
julesjones: (Default)
Just sent "Ghost Train" off to Penumbra. I don't hold out much hope for its chances, but am still glad to have sent it out again.

Been a good couple of days writing-wise. Yesterday Alex and I pulled out a novelette we started back in 2006, and didn't quite finish before she crashed healthwise. I've been wanting to get it finished ever since *I* perked up healthwise late last year, but she's been unenthused about writing romance and/or smut. However, Doctor/Master fandom appears to have refreshed the writing parts other fandoms cannot, so I prodded her again yesterday, and having re-read it for the first time in a couple of years, quoting choice lines to me as she went along, she said, "This is good. We need to finish it." She must be enthusiastic, because it turned out that she was correcting typos in the Google Docs copy as she went along. If we both manage not to fall off a health cliff for a few weeks, we might get somewhere with it. Her LJ posts when we started it almost exactly six years ago:
http://predatrix.livejournal.com/40243.html
http://predatrix.livejournal.com/40665.html
julesjones: (Default)
Just sent off "And if I offered thee a bargain". This could prove interesting. I've submitted it specifically as speculative fiction, but given that most of my credits are in erotic romance, the ending could come as a nasty shock to anyone who assumes that this one is as well.
julesjones: (Default)
Just back from the post office, and posting my submission to Maxim Jakubowski's Mammoth Book of Erotic Quickies in the hope that it will get there before the closing date on Sunday. As you can imagine, self-editing even something as short as 7 pages/1500 words has been a somewhat slow process given the current state of my typing.

Not as slow as actually getting around to the editing, though. My crit group went over A Sparrow Flies Through 5 years ago, but for various reasons I wasn't able to do anything with their suggestions before whatever market I was interested in at the time closed. So I left it, and then stopped regularly checking the short story markets, and didn't see anything suitable for something this length and genre until my last Irregular Contemplation Of The Trunk a month back.

Thank you to my critters - it may have taken 5 years for your suggestions to come to fruition, but they were extremely useful in polishing the story this month.

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February 2017

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