Jibber Jabber - Q1 - 29

Open topics on the Contest itself, to include results-watch threads and other items of note.
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Martin L. Shoemaker
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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby Martin L. Shoemaker » Mon Feb 27, 2012 3:06 pm

george nik. wrote:
Martin L. Shoemaker wrote:It is an illness called Duotropery: the obsessive study of Duotrope results in an attempt to intuit what your own results might be.

It's not an illness, Martin. It's a cure. wotf007


While I grant this is easier said than done, I still maintain that the best cure to anticipation is to write more and submit more. My goal is to have so many stories and so many submissions, I literally forget about them. The last time I forgot a submission, it ended up as a Finalist here. I like that kind of surprise!
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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby ThomasKCarpenter » Mon Feb 27, 2012 3:38 pm

I agree, Martin. Right now, I have eighteen stories out at the markets and I couldn't tell you which one is where or when I expect to have any back. Occasionally one comes back and I figure out where to ship it next and forget it. The cruel reality is that we novices are going to be rejected hundreds of times before we make our first sale. So there's no reason to get worked up, just focus that energy into your writing.
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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby Martin L. Shoemaker » Mon Feb 27, 2012 5:03 pm

ThomasKCarpenter wrote:I agree, Martin. Right now, I have eighteen stories out at the markets and I couldn't tell you which one is where or when I expect to have any back. Occasionally one comes back and I figure out where to ship it next and forget it. The cruel reality is that we novices are going to be rejected hundreds of times before we make our first sale. So there's no reason to get worked up, just focus that energy into your writing.


I have to keep track just a little more closely than that. I have set myself a goal that every completed story must be out to a market every Saturday. So on Saturdays, I have to check to make sure I haven't forgotten one.

Right now I have two that aren't out, so I'm falling behind. One is my Semi, and I'm still trying to decide how to respond to KD's critique with that one. And one MIGHT be my Q2, so I'm not sure I want to tie it up right now.
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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby Patrick S. McGinnity » Mon Feb 27, 2012 5:51 pm

I do agree that more creative work is the best distraction from anticipation, as well as being the best antidote for elevated expectations. Investing too much in any given submission is a recipe for disappointment, though the Forum does provides us a unique opportunity to share the anticipatory anxiety we would otherwise be suppressing.

I'm sure L. Ron Hubbard would sooner have seen us at work on the next story (or the one after that) than obsessing over the one we've got in this quarter. And yet, the loneliness that comes with writing is strangely soothed by sharing our sometimes painful anticipation rather than denying it. I have been blessed, I suppose, with a disposition that takes rejection as proof that at least I tried, and no matter how much I had hoped for success in a given sphere, understands failure as a challenge to succeed next time.

I'm in the process of moving from writing "literary" (or mainstream with an academic bent) fiction to speculative fiction, the latter of which is why I wanted to write in the first place, years ago. I was writing fantasy all along, but I never really got a solid grip on the short story form, so I only have two completed spec. fic. stories in circulation, and one of those is a reprint (mostly podcast markets). This year looks promising, though, as I have a no fewer than four stories in the works, which is a huge step forward for me (the past five or six years have been largely spent rewriting a novel I began as an undergrad and continued in my masters thesis). I've set myself a goal of getting six new stories in circulation before the end of the calendar year (including my Q2 sub, which I plan to bounce to a couple quick turnaround mags before the end of the quarter).

I'd urge everyone to read the Brad R. Torgersen guest blog that was posted in...let's see, was it "From the Pros?" Anyway, it's all about perseverance and seeing the big picture (your career, that is). It really got me thinking, though, which is why I bring it up. This is the year, I've decided, in which I will get serious about my writing career. Our youngest is almost one-and-a-half, I'm finally getting to the point where I feel qualified to do my job, and there is nothing (relatively speaking) standing in my way. Except, of course, myself.

So, I plan to use Duotrope to be more productive and efficient (though I'm sure I'll also occasionally indulge my weakness for eager anticipation at times too), just as I plan to use the online communities I've found (the Forum and Critters) for both support and to improve my skills as a writer.

I can't really remember why exactly I started posting tonight, but I hope this makes some kind of sense to someone.
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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby morshana » Mon Feb 27, 2012 9:05 pm

Patrick S. McGinnity wrote:I do agree that more creative work is the best distraction from anticipation, as well as being the best antidote for elevated expectations. Investing too much in any given submission is a recipe for disappointment, though the Forum does provides us a unique opportunity to share the anticipatory anxiety we would otherwise be suppressing.

I'm sure L. Ron Hubbard would sooner have seen us at work on the next story (or the one after that) than obsessing over the one we've got in this quarter. And yet, the loneliness that comes with writing is strangely soothed by sharing our sometimes painful anticipation rather than denying it. I have been blessed, I suppose, with a disposition that takes rejection as proof that at least I tried, and no matter how much I had hoped for success in a given sphere, understands failure as a challenge to succeed next time.

I'm in the process of moving from writing "literary" (or mainstream with an academic bent) fiction to speculative fiction, the latter of which is why I wanted to write in the first place, years ago. I was writing fantasy all along, but I never really got a solid grip on the short story form, so I only have two completed spec. fic. stories in circulation, and one of those is a reprint (mostly podcast markets). This year looks promising, though, as I have a no fewer than four stories in the works, which is a huge step forward for me (the past five or six years have been largely spent rewriting a novel I began as an undergrad and continued in my masters thesis). I've set myself a goal of getting six new stories in circulation before the end of the calendar year (including my Q2 sub, which I plan to bounce to a couple quick turnaround mags before the end of the quarter).

I'd urge everyone to read the Brad R. Torgersen guest blog that was posted in...let's see, was it "From the Pros?" Anyway, it's all about perseverance and seeing the big picture (your career, that is). It really got me thinking, though, which is why I bring it up. This is the year, I've decided, in which I will get serious about my writing career. Our youngest is almost one-and-a-half, I'm finally getting to the point where I feel qualified to do my job, and there is nothing (relatively speaking) standing in my way. Except, of course, myself.

So, I plan to use Duotrope to be more productive and efficient (though I'm sure I'll also occasionally indulge my weakness for eager anticipation at times too), just as I plan to use the online communities I've found (the Forum and Critters) for both support and to improve my skills as a writer.

I can't really remember why exactly I started posting tonight, but I hope this makes some kind of sense to someone.


Very clear. =)

I have nothing out in circulation right now, well, except my Q1 entry. And, oddly enough, I keep forgetting about it. Not having other stories in circulation has relieved me of my Duotropery I think, though I would much prefer to have so many stories in circulation that I forget about them all. Or maybe just having more short stories under my belt has helped because I'm not so fixated on a handful.

Right now, my First Reader is reading my Q2 first draft. Eek! I think I'll get to work on getting my other (finished) stories ready for submission to distract me from this nervous anticipation!
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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby george nik. » Tue Feb 28, 2012 2:11 am

Martin L. Shoemaker wrote:While I grant this is easier said than done, I still maintain that the best cure to anticipation is to write more and submit more.

Well...I'm not 100% certain about that... Since sending off my Q1 entry on December 31st, I've written and submitted five more and I'm just starting on another one. This, however, hasn't even begun to cure my anticipation. I've six times more anticipation, in fact.

My goal is to get about fifty stories in circulation by the end of the calendar year. I don't know if it's realistic or not, but I've written four on February, so it can't be that hard. The point is to keep writing. I hate rejections and I hate waiting, but I'm willing to try to get used to both in order to achieve my goal.

When I was writing in Greek I had finished sixteen stories of which 7 had been published, but in Greece you are not paid if they publish your story (and the circulation is insignificant as well) so it was a bit pointless anyway. I think I can do much better than that here, because I'm really dedicated now -- before it was more like a pastime.
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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby s_c_baker » Tue Feb 28, 2012 9:20 am

george nik. wrote:When I was writing in Greek I had finished sixteen stories of which 7 had been published, but in Greece you are not paid if they publish your story (and the circulation is insignificant as well) so it was a bit pointless anyway. I think I can do much better than that here, because I'm really dedicated now -- before it was more like a pastime.


Hey, published is published. Seven times is not an insignificant number, either.

And anyone writing in something other than their native language has my major respect automatically. If I tried to write in Japanese (the only language other than English I'm anything like fluent in) it'd sound like a half-asleep third-grader wrote it and then a random-word-generator filled in the rest... wotf001

I'm sure you'll do well, George.
Stewart C Baker - 1st place, Q2 V32
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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby Dustin Adams » Tue Feb 28, 2012 12:47 pm

I've been reading some of George's stuff.
I really can't tell English isn't his primary or even only language.
Sorry to intrude on the thread with that, but I've been meaning to say it for some time now and keep forgetting. wotf004
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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby Martin L. Shoemaker » Tue Feb 28, 2012 12:52 pm

Dustin Adams wrote:I've been reading some of George's stuff.
I really can't tell English isn't his primary or even only language.
Sorry to intrude on the thread with that, but I've been meaning to say it for some time now and keep forgetting. wotf004


Let me put it this way... George's English is 1000% better than my Greek. Or my Russian (which I actually studied for 2 years, 27 years ago). Or my French. Or my Italian. Or my Spanish. Or... Computer languages I can handle, but I have no talent for human languages. George puts me to shame.
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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby s_c_baker » Tue Feb 28, 2012 2:26 pm

Martin L. Shoemaker wrote:
Dustin Adams wrote:I've been reading some of George's stuff.
I really can't tell English isn't his primary or even only language.
Sorry to intrude on the thread with that, but I've been meaning to say it for some time now and keep forgetting. wotf004


Let me put it this way... George's English is 1000% better than my Greek. Or my Russian (which I actually studied for 2 years, 27 years ago). Or my French. Or my Italian. Or my Spanish. Or... Computer languages I can handle, but I have no talent for human languages. George puts me to shame.

How does it compare to your English? wotf007

By the way, I hope my post to you didn't come off as uh... talking-down-to-you*... George.


(* I know there's a word for this... I know there's a word for this... I know there's a word for this... Ugh. Screw it. [Where do I get off making fun of Martin again?] )
Stewart C Baker - 1st place, Q2 V32
My contest history: Semi-finalist, R, HM, R, R, HM, HM, R, R, R, R, HM, R, R, R, R, Winner
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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby gower21 » Tue Feb 28, 2012 2:36 pm

s_c_baker wrote:
Martin L. Shoemaker wrote:
Dustin Adams wrote:I've been reading some of George's stuff.
I really can't tell English isn't his primary or even only language.
Sorry to intrude on the thread with that, but I've been meaning to say it for some time now and keep forgetting. wotf004


Let me put it this way... George's English is 1000% better than my Greek. Or my Russian (which I actually studied for 2 years, 27 years ago). Or my French. Or my Italian. Or my Spanish. Or... Computer languages I can handle, but I have no talent for human languages. George puts me to shame.

How does it compare to your English? wotf007

By the way, I hope my post to you didn't come off as uh... talking-down-to-you*... George.


(* I know there's a word for this... I know there's a word for this... I know there's a word for this... Ugh. Screw it. [Where do I get off making fun of Martin again?] )


I'll say it...I'm not ashamed to admit that George's English is better than my English. You must be more left brained (language based)?

I wish we had opportunities younger in life (here in the US) to learn multiple languages.

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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby Grayson Morris » Tue Feb 28, 2012 2:49 pm

Another Q1 rejection's come in on Duotrope...can they ALL be erroneous? Or have no forum members happened to be in the response batches that have gone out so far? It seems unlikely, but it's certainly possible.
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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby Martin L. Shoemaker » Tue Feb 28, 2012 2:51 pm

s_c_baker wrote:How does it compare to your English? wotf007


My English is a consciously affected informal style designed to convey a Midwestern "Aw shucks" persona. I intentionally eschew the formal prose stylings of business or academia, having decided that they obscure more than they convey. But having reached that conclusion early in my business writing career, I found an unexpected additional benefit: it's less work and more authentic if I just be myself.

And yes, George's English is better than mine even when I try hard!

By the way, I hope my post to you didn't come off as uh... talking-down-to-you*... George.


(* I know there's a word for this... I know there's a word for this... I know there's a word for this... Ugh. Screw it. [Where do I get off making fun of Martin again?] )


"Condescending" is the word you're looking for. I know it all too well.
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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby Kary English » Tue Feb 28, 2012 3:29 pm

Grayson Morris wrote:Another Q1 rejection's come in on Duotrope...can they ALL be erroneous? Or have no forum members happened to be in the response batches that have gone out so far? It seems unlikely, but it's certainly possible.


The ones that all came right after the blog post convinced me they were bad data. Now I'm swinging back the other way - maybe there's a trickle or real responses coming in.

I must remind myself that I was a last minute paper sub...
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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby gower21 » Tue Feb 28, 2012 3:35 pm

Kary James wrote:
I must remind myself that I was a last minute paper sub...



We can huddle in a corner together and pray our submissions even made it while all the responses flood onto the board.

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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby morshana » Tue Feb 28, 2012 3:38 pm

@Tina and Kary - You mean watch all the flies drop as you hover overhead, clinging to the edge of the spider's web? "Noooo! Please don't eat me!" come the tiny cries. Do we really want to fall into the...

Um. Just realized this might not be the most, uh, encouraging post. Read Brad's post for encouragement! *goes back to read it a second time*

I should clarify, the tiny cries are not yours, but the masses... *sigh* I think I'm in my own little world today.
Last edited by morshana on Tue Feb 28, 2012 3:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby Kary English » Tue Feb 28, 2012 3:39 pm

gower21 wrote:
Kary James wrote:
I must remind myself that I was a last minute paper sub...



We can huddle in a corner together and pray our submissions even made it while all the responses flood onto the board.


Yes, and I can torment myself with the idea that submitting really early would have been better b/c by the time she reads ours, she'll have already sort of picked the HM/semis/ finalists she likes and she won't want to bump somebody for ours.

Ack! Somebody pummel me with a Nerf mace for even saying that. :)
WOTF: 1 HM, 1 Semi, 2 Finalists, 1 Winner
Q2,V31 - Winner Winner Chicken Dinner!
Flight of the Kikayon at the Grantville Gazette
Totaled (revised HM) in issue #9 of Mike Resnick's Galaxy's Edge
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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby george nik. » Tue Feb 28, 2012 3:43 pm

s_c_baker wrote:I'm sure you'll do well, George.

Thanks a lot, Stewart! I really hope you're right on that one! wotf007

Dustin Adams wrote:I've been reading some of George's stuff.
I really can't tell English isn't his primary or even only language.
Sorry to intrude on the thread with that, but I've been meaning to say it for some time now and keep forgetting. wotf004

Thanks, Dustin! I hadn't realized my English is that good!

s_c_baker wrote:By the way, I hope my post to you didn't come off as uh... talking-down-to-you*... George.

No, surely not, don't worry about it!

gower21 wrote:I'll say it...I'm not ashamed to admit that George's English is better than my English.


Martin L. Shoemaker wrote:And yes, George's English is better than mine even when I try hard!

Hey, guys, aren't you exaggerating a little?!!! wotf006
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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby morshana » Tue Feb 28, 2012 3:43 pm

Kary James wrote:
gower21 wrote:
Kary James wrote:
I must remind myself that I was a last minute paper sub...



We can huddle in a corner together and pray our submissions even made it while all the responses flood onto the board.


Yes, and I can torment myself with the idea that submitting really early would have been better b/c by the time she reads ours, she'll have already sort of picked the HM/semis/ finalists she likes and she won't want to bump somebody for ours.

Ack! Somebody pummel me with a Nerf mace for even saying that. :)


Consider yourself duly pummeled. ;)
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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby george nik. » Tue Feb 28, 2012 3:44 pm

Kary James wrote:
Grayson Morris wrote:Another Q1 rejection's come in on Duotrope...can they ALL be erroneous? Or have no forum members happened to be in the response batches that have gone out so far? It seems unlikely, but it's certainly possible.


The ones that all came right after the blog post convinced me they were bad data. Now I'm swinging back the other way - maybe there's a trickle or real responses coming in.

I must remind myself that I was a last minute paper sub...


I also believe they can't all be bad data. Something's going on here...
George Nikolopoulos
WOTF: 1 SF, 1 SHM, 4 HM
Fiction (EN): 43 stories sold, 29 published
Fiction (GR): c.10 stories published & a children’s novel
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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby morshana » Tue Feb 28, 2012 3:46 pm

george nik. wrote:
Kary James wrote:
Grayson Morris wrote:Another Q1 rejection's come in on Duotrope...can they ALL be erroneous? Or have no forum members happened to be in the response batches that have gone out so far? It seems unlikely, but it's certainly possible.


The ones that all came right after the blog post convinced me they were bad data. Now I'm swinging back the other way - maybe there's a trickle or real responses coming in.

I must remind myself that I was a last minute paper sub...


I also believe they can't all be bad data. Something's going on here...


Yes. I believe there are tremors on the web, but whether the spider is having tea yet, I can't say.
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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby gower21 » Tue Feb 28, 2012 3:52 pm

Kary James wrote:
gower21 wrote:
Kary James wrote:
I must remind myself that I was a last minute paper sub...



We can huddle in a corner together and pray our submissions even made it while all the responses flood onto the board.


Yes, and I can torment myself with the idea that submitting really early would have been better b/c by the time she reads ours, she'll have already sort of picked the HM/semis/ finalists she likes and she won't want to bump somebody for ours.

Ack! Somebody pummel me with a Nerf mace for even saying that. :)


Yep. Too much psych and sociology in my brain. The best position is to be first or last. In the case of a huge contest where there are thousands, better to be near the top when the reader is a little more enthusiastic than near the bottom where they're jaded and just want to be done.

Although in the past KD has said she sometimes finds a Finalist at the bottom of the pile.

Also back on the rejectomancy topic. I think in Q4 we had trickles of a few rejections a day before the big batches. And the letters said something like: rejections are going out as they are read, rather than in batches to free up stories, so you can send them off to another market. Or something like that.

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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby george nik. » Tue Feb 28, 2012 3:55 pm

s_c_baker wrote:And anyone writing in something other than their native language has my major respect automatically. If I tried to write in Japanese (the only language other than English I'm anything like fluent in) it'd sound like a half-asleep third-grader wrote it and then a random-word-generator filled in the rest... wotf001


Japanese is a very difficult language for us Europeans/Americans.
By the way, I don't know if, in the course of your Japanese studies, you have come across Lafkadio Hearn (Koizumi Yakumo). He was born in Greece, but he became one of the best-known short story writers in Japan.
George Nikolopoulos
WOTF: 1 SF, 1 SHM, 4 HM
Fiction (EN): 43 stories sold, 29 published
Fiction (GR): c.10 stories published & a children’s novel
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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby morshana » Tue Feb 28, 2012 3:56 pm

gower21 wrote:Yep. Too much psych and sociology in my brain. The best position is to be first or last. In the case of a huge contest where there are thousands, better to be near the top when the reader is a little more enthusiastic than near the bottom where they're jaded and just want to be done.

Although in the past KD has said she sometimes finds a Finalist at the bottom of the pile.

Also back on the rejectomancy topic. I think in Q4 we had trickles of a few rejections a day before the big batches. And the letters said something like: rejections are going out as they are read, rather than in batches to free up stories, so you can send them off to another market. Or something like that.


Sounds about right, Tina. From what little I've seen (only been watching for two quarters now), rejections start with a trickle.
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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby morshana » Tue Feb 28, 2012 4:00 pm

The problem has started again. All this Rejectomancy is giving me another flare of Duotropery. I must have fruit!
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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby Martin L. Shoemaker » Tue Feb 28, 2012 4:05 pm

morshana wrote:The problem has started again. All this Rejectomancy is giving me another flare of Duotropery. I must have fruit!


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Other worlds from award-winning author Martin L. Shoemaker

WRITE! WRITE! WRITE! WRITE! WRITE!
SUBMIT! SUBMIT! SUBMIT! SUBMIT! SUBMIT!
REPEAT! REPEAT! REPEAT! REPEAT! REPEAT!
Patience. Patience. Patience. Patience. Patience.
NNiNN

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gower21
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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby gower21 » Tue Feb 28, 2012 4:05 pm

morshana wrote:The problem has started again. All this Rejectomancy is giving me another flare of Duotropery. I must have fruit!


Oh no, do you have a case of the Rickets too? Flare ups of mental and physical disorders! This will be the worst disease ridden quarter yet!

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gower21
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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby gower21 » Tue Feb 28, 2012 4:08 pm

Martin L. Shoemaker wrote:
morshana wrote:The problem has started again. All this Rejectomancy is giving me another flare of Duotropery. I must have fruit!


WRITE! WRITE! WRITE! WRITE! WRITE!



^ What he said ^

The best cure for this disease is writing and submitting. I hear Yoga helps too.

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Martin L. Shoemaker
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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby Martin L. Shoemaker » Tue Feb 28, 2012 4:22 pm

gower21 wrote:
Martin L. Shoemaker wrote:
morshana wrote:The problem has started again. All this Rejectomancy is giving me another flare of Duotropery. I must have fruit!


WRITE! WRITE! WRITE! WRITE! WRITE!



^ What he said ^

The best cure for a mental disorder such as this is to be strong in the mind. Do something mindful...there are too many people relying on medication for their Rejectomancy/Duotropery -- a disorder that in simple and less severe cases could be solved by writing more or submitting more. I hear Yoga helps too.


I like this post by Sarah Hoyt, in which she links to this video of great psychiatric advice (from Bob Newhart, no less).
http://Shoemaker.Space
Other worlds from award-winning author Martin L. Shoemaker

WRITE! WRITE! WRITE! WRITE! WRITE!
SUBMIT! SUBMIT! SUBMIT! SUBMIT! SUBMIT!
REPEAT! REPEAT! REPEAT! REPEAT! REPEAT!
Patience. Patience. Patience. Patience. Patience.
NNiNN

morshana
Posts: 1937
Joined: Sat Nov 12, 2011 12:37 pm
Location: California

Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby morshana » Tue Feb 28, 2012 4:26 pm

@Martin and Tina - Thank you. Yes. More writing would be helpful. You see, I finished my first draft for Q2 and am no longer obsessed with that, thereby freeing up more mental energy for diseases such as Rejectomancy and Duotropery.

Regarding the fruit, I don't know what Vincent's problem (Time Bandits) was, but fruit seemed to fix the problem. I figured I'd give it a try.

My flares of Rejectomancy and Duotropery seem to unfortunately also block creative juices for me. *smacks head to desk* More fruit might help! Write, write. Yes - I will work on another story as soon as I fix the problems with my first draft. Perhaps making dinner will provide a nice distraction?
Jeanette Gonzalez

HM x4, SHM x2, F x1


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