Jibber Jabber - Q1 - 29

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

Postby Strycher » Tue Oct 25, 2011 4:14 pm

M.O.Muriel wrote:No matter how good a writer you are, if you're only writing for yourself and your tastes, that's awesome. You may or may not reach an audience that way, though.


There are 7 billion people on the planet. Snowflakes and fingerprints aside, I doubt* anyone ever thought of a story that appealed to only themselves. I think the point being made was that you shouldn't curb all your writing efforts to pleasing editors. That sentiment seems to agree with your opinion that running the juggernaught of pleasing agents> editors > publishers > publicist > bookstore buyers > critic > audience does not a good story make.

The other possible point being made is that it's not a bad idea to partition your writing and your publicizing.

So, what I'm saying is: step 1) write story; step 2) find audience; step 3) market to audience.

Though I guess it might also work in reverse. Amanda Hocking said that, while she had many ideas including the one that she was successful with before she considered selfpubbing, she chose the vampire-romance story to start with because it was currently a popular genre.

*edit

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wellsdesigned
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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby wellsdesigned » Tue Oct 25, 2011 6:17 pm

soulmirror wrote: Illustrators get one page from a 40 page story, etc.


Speaking to the marketing side, I think cover art is more important than ever. Everyone knows what the Empire State Building looks like from the outside and I challenge anyone to tell me what the floor plan looks like inside. As a writer who knows the only way to success will be through self promotion, I know that I need dynamite cover art to get there. I also know that my one self published story experiment does not deliver on that promise, and I know that the sales reflect it. It may also be the story, I'm not delusional, but I suspect that my simple attempt at cover art is not up to par. The trouble is I'm not ready to pay enough for that dynamite yet. But as someone in a graphics oriented field, I know that crappy building design can be sold by slick renderings and I believe that mediocre stories can be sold by spot on art (now if the story is too mediocre, that wonderful cover art will only work once and you won't gain repeat readings on new stories, but that's another topic).

I have a novel length manuscript I tried my own hand at painting a cover for, but it hasn't been published because I am unsatisfied with my art effort (if your curious, go to my website and look at the Red Sands Of Revolution Story art there). I won't put that one out there until I have a cover I think can market it properly otherwise I'm confident it will sit flat. So until I can try again with a better image I have imagined, or something else, it will sit on a shelf.

I think the story has to be good too, but I believe the art to story ratio is probably somewhere near even in the Amazon type marketplace.

Somewhere in there is good reviews too, but you can't get anything reviewed unless you can get someone to at least download a sample.

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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby M.O.Muriel » Tue Oct 25, 2011 7:06 pm

wellsdesigned wrote:I think cover art is more important than ever.


Amen.

Depending on how you look at that, its either totally awesome or sad but true wotf008 . Admittedly, I here am guilty as charged for buying pi$$-poor novels, because of their spectacular cover art.

My mid-grade novel, The Land of OCKT and the Adventures of Peeje, the Kat Herder, which will be launching ePub in November, is fully illustrated. When I lived in CA, I did a lot of marketing to libraries and Boys and Girls clubs with the illustrations and the 1st chapter to get kid's takes on it. (kids are tough sells, btw; they have no problem being honest). Anyway, I had to stop showing the illustrations first, to see if the writing was any good, because they were always sold, hands-down, based on the illustrations!!! wotf017 (As it happens, I found out by hiding the illustrations until the end that they liked Ch. 1, too, because they'd raise their hands and want to know what happened next, and "where did you get your inspiration from," kind of thing <whew!>).

But yeah, poor cover art can kill even a best seller's sales . . .

(Personally, I think this whole marketing thing on any front is a pain in the a$$, myself, but, well, I have stories, and I want to share them with everyone. So darn it, that I shall wotf024 ).
~M. O. Muriel
(Meghan)

WotF - WINNER, 2nd Place, Q3, 2011, vol. 28 (5x HM)
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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby soulmirror » Tue Oct 25, 2011 8:04 pm

M.O.Muriel wrote:
wellsdesigned wrote:I think cover art is more important than ever.


Amen.
Depending on how you look at that, its either totally awesome or sad but true wotf008 . Admittedly, I here am guilty as charged for buying pi$$-poor novels, because of their spectacular cover art.


(referencing numerous scenes from the re-imagined BATTLESTAR GALACTICA)
"So say we all !!!" wotf008

Also though, to suggest the obvious:
Illustrated or not, well-illustrated or badly ... the writing is still as good (or bad) as the writing is !!!

I occasionally get the feeling that some writers think their writing needs to go un-illustrated as some sort of "purity test" ... so that their writing can "stand on its own" wotf021

Well ... our writing WILL stand on its own. (But only if anyone reads it)

The ILLUSTRATIONS (or cover art) does at least two things:

It helps attract a reader/buyer who probably has little reason (sans author's name recognition, which few of us have, honestly) to READ your writing in the first place (to pick YOUR book up when there are a hundred others to choose from) ... and to give some clue about the nature of the book (not just "Is that a well-painted vampire" but also "Is that a FUNNY vampire book? A sexy romantic vampire book? A ghastly horrifying vampire book?" etc )

Good cover art attracts ... bad cover art (yes, sadly common in the e-published world) definitely repulses and detracts, imo. But that's the game of marketing.

Who cares what the WRITER looks like? Probably no one.
But who cares what the COVER ART looks like? I'd guess enough buyers (and I said buyers there, not necessarily readers) to sink or soar our careers.

I'll take a philosophical and salesman stand you'd expect from any IOTF guy: Anyone who publishes their e-book without giving the cover art great and deep thought ... (or at least puts the thinking into the hands of someone who is into and understands the challenge) ... has gone off half-cocked.

You may not find the "perfect" art or artist for your cover ... but there's no reason you cannot explore DeviantArts, find art you like, and e-mail some folks and say "I'll pay you $50 just to use the art you've already got sitting there."

Some will be out of your price range, no question. But there are alot of struggling artists who would gladly pick up $50 for zero effort.

Heck, go visit some IOTF winners' websites and check them out (I don't know if having art on someone's e-book would ruin an artist's amateur status for competing in IOTF or not though. ILLUSTRATORS -- Research that first!)
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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby gower21 » Tue Oct 25, 2011 9:14 pm

I don't think there should be a question about cover art being one of the important ingredients to see a book. I follow this blog (a collection of romance writers who have won the golden heart) and they run all sorts of nifty advice on writing. They just did a survey of a couple hundred readers on what gets them to buy a book. It was pretty much the standard: cover, blurb, first page, recommendations from friends or trusted reviewers.

In that order.

It may be the case that a few writer types ignore the cover, but overall a good cover is going to get you the general public reader and that is what you want to hit. Those are the people who are going to be recommending your books to their friends, ect. And even if someone happens to not notice the cover, you'd still want that part of the marketing equation to be tip top, right? If you want your book to appeal to all sorts of buyers who are inspired to plunk down their cash for a book--then you'd want to market to the left-brained and the right-brained and the people in-between, that means good visual, good words to back up that visual.

Of course the survey I talk about above is romance readers, who make up the largest population of buyers in the market, who are mostly women--I don't know if science fiction readers would be that much different (I truly don't know, I'm not trying to make a reference across the groups, just wonder if sci fi readers are that much different? Maybe the dynamics of the group make it harder to market and that is why the sales in that section are so much lower compared to some other genres).

I'm curious, Meghan, How you will be received now that you have won BOTH contests. Now when you swagger into the local B&N I hope they eat their words. I love these kinds of stories with a happy ending.

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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby MJNL » Wed Oct 26, 2011 5:53 am

gower21 wrote:I'm curious, Meghan, How you will be received now that you have won BOTH contests. Now when you swagger into the local B&N I hope they eat their words. I love these kinds of stories with a happy ending.


Ha. I was thinking about that too.

I think the hard part about doing your own cover, or hiring someone who's not a pro to do it, is that while it's easy to recognize a good cover from a bad, it's a whole lot harder to emulate good than it might seem. At least, that's what I gather from the thousands of bad indie covers out there--which is really unfortunate, because some of those stories are good, but you'd never know it if you stopped at the visuals (and some of the visuals are so off-putting, it’s hard to scrape past them).

And it's not all laziness or the inability to afford good art. Some people just don't have very good taste, or can't separate themselves enough from their own art to gauge its quality objectively.

That's why in the publishing houses art is its own department. But indie publications are a one-person show. Either you can deliver the total package, or you can't, and sales will reflect that.

Luckily, there's a learning curve. wotf011
~Marina

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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby gower21 » Wed Oct 26, 2011 12:34 pm

A cover can be changed too. I see lots of indie writers switch a cover out after they've made a few sales to justify the purchase. Most find an increase in sales with the better cover too. Could be the cover, could be that the story hit its stride...but it is a vote in the direction of a better cover either way.

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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby ThomasKCarpenter » Wed Oct 26, 2011 1:56 pm

gower21 wrote:A cover can be changed too. I see lots of indie writers switch a cover out after they've made a few sales to justify the purchase. Most find an increase in sales with the better cover too. Could be the cover, could be that the story hit its stride...but it is a vote in the direction of a better cover either way.


I've done that a few times and I'm planning on doing it with my first trilogy when I publish the final book of the series. The first cover isn't bad, but I really want to give it a lift. Plus, my wife is designing my covers now and she's getting better and better with each one and by next summer she says she should be able to achieve the look I want.
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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby M.O.Muriel » Wed Oct 26, 2011 2:35 pm

@ Scott: Amen, and again . . . Amen wotf008

MJNL wrote:And it's not all laziness or the inability to afford good art. Some people just don't have very good taste, or can't separate themselves enough from their own art to gauge its quality objectively.

That's why in the publishing houses art is its own department. But indie publications are a one-person show. Either you can deliver the total package, or you can't, and sales will reflect that.


Exactly why publishers look at you like you have two heads if you, as an aspiring author/illustrator without a megalithic platform, say that you've done your own illustrations for a project (God forbid). They do indeed have logical, sound reason for this regarding of two-headedness. Which is why it's a pain in the a$$ when you, therefore, have to prove to the industry at large that you've got what it takes. . . . Which is, by the by, exactly, 100% the reason why I entered both sides of L. Ron Hubbard's Writers and Illustrators of the Future wotf010 . Unlike most contests, this thing, dare I say, actually has a platform?

Secret: hehe, I even did all of my winning illustrations under cover of darkness, because my husband, bread and groomed as a military man since 19, has a certain prominent function of the brain that insists on results. And, lol, entering a contest doesn't always (or even usually) generate said results after X amount of 'reasonable' time. So if Y or, ewe, Z amount of time is spent, instead, that is generally regarded as a 'waste of time.' Which is, of course, completely not true. It's like compairing apples and oranges. I've even done a fair amount of writing (er, okay, okay revising of projects) this way: in a fox hole. BUT! . . . just to be clear, hands down, he's my biggest support base on all fronts; he's just got that drill sergeant side that sometimes doesn't understand some aspects of this 'breaking out' thing, lol!!! wotf024 . Anyway, it's kinda the opposite of a spouse who smiles and 'likes' everything you write. He makes a kick butt manager, though wotf007 .

But I digress . . . the publishers looking at you as if you have 2 heads thing. That leads to:

MJNL wrote:gower21 wrote:
I'm curious, Meghan, How you will be received now that you have won BOTH contests. Now when you swagger into the local B&N I hope they eat their words. I love these kinds of stories with a happy ending.

Ha. I was thinking about that too.


I honestly didn't know it at the time, but this snubby attitude percolates down, too. I mean, I will admit that this B&N thing totally took me off guard--like I had just been told to go sit at the back of the bus. I even drove 50 miles to this particular B&N to meet the manager in person and hand him my credentials, and that after hearing how excited he was over the phone (I guess when he thought I was a writer winner wotf017 ).

Illustrators really are second-class citizens. I didn't know this, because every illustrator I've met is just so humble about it. Like they don't have a voice or spokesperson. Sure, I can detect that some resentment runs deep, but everyone I met, all the judges, all my peers, all those rock stars, they're just so modest. So, more than this being a personal insult, it kind of reflects the broader problem of artists being taken for granted wotf005 . And just ask any of the judges on the WotF side; they'll tell you outright that good or bad covers reflect sales (which, lol, wasn't exactly the original point of this thread, but there you go).

Anyway, for me, personally, the story is oxymoronic: I'm an aspiring career novelist (and illustrator), who learned how to write 'short stories' just for this contest, so that I could win both sides, to (hopefully--?) finally be taken serious by the general industry, so that I can become . . . a career novelist! (Who also illustrates some of her own projects, too). Strange times. Strange times. Everyone has a different story. But that's mine.

wotf006 When did we digress so much off topic . . . ??
~M. O. Muriel
(Meghan)

WotF - WINNER, 2nd Place, Q3, 2011, vol. 28 (5x HM)
IotF - WINNER Q2, 2010, vol. 27 (2x Finalist)

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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby gower21 » Wed Oct 26, 2011 2:52 pm

"How did we digress so off topic?": It's how we kill time till each quarter results are in and writing the next story.

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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby Martin L. Shoemaker » Wed Oct 26, 2011 3:01 pm

M.O.Muriel wrote:Secret: hehe, I even did all of my winning illustrations under cover of darkness, because my husband, bread and groomed as a military man since 19, has a certain prominent function of the brain that insists on results. And, lol, entering a contest doesn't always (or even usually) generate said results after X amount of 'reasonable' time. So if Y or, ewe, Z amount of time is spent, instead, that is generally regarded as a 'waste of time.' Which is, of course, completely not true.


First, my sincere respects and appreciation to your husband. He's a better man than I, and I'm not joking when I say that.

But if he says taking longer means you've wasted time, quote Field Marshal von Moltke: "No battle plan survives contact with the enemy." You have a plan, but then the plan must be adapted as you carry it out.
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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby M.O.Muriel » Wed Oct 26, 2011 6:11 pm

Martin L. Shoemaker wrote:"No battle plan survives contact with the enemy." You have a plan, but then the plan must be adapted as you carry it out.


wotf024
~M. O. Muriel
(Meghan)

WotF - WINNER, 2nd Place, Q3, 2011, vol. 28 (5x HM)
IotF - WINNER Q2, 2010, vol. 27 (2x Finalist)

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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby katsincommand » Wed Oct 26, 2011 6:19 pm

Much like my first pass previsions....
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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby DavidK » Thu Oct 27, 2011 2:11 am

...So Say We All ... how those words have charged a nation: I remember the day I signed up to fight the Amebons because of it...the grip of the particle laser in my hand so comforting. (This is n ot my Q1 story but another sub, somewhere in a universe far far away:)
8 HMs.

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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby Dustin Adams » Thu Oct 27, 2011 11:41 am

Note on the URL: There are some ads, not pop-ups, but a little frustrating.
http://www.cracked.com/article_14790_the-best-worst-fantasy-science-fiction-book-covers.html
There's also some cursing, but it's used to comic effect. Click at your own eye peril.

Topic:

M.O. Muriel wrote:
Well, there is no formula that I can see... ...it just "feels" right all over; it really "feels" like a WotF story...

I have to agree with a story "feeling" like a WotF story. I'd done a crit for a fellow Q3 finalist's story, and when Joni called me, I asked straight out if that story was one of the eight. It was.

I'm going to go out on a limb and say I've read a story from a board member here that I believe has a solid chance at elite eight. If not, then sweet eighteen. It "felt" like a WotF story. Last I knew he was working on the ending before submitting. I sure hope he was able to nail it.

M.O. Muriel wrote:
...My tips of musts for WotF: Have a high concept. Have a powerful theme. Don't skimp, not even just to "have something to submit;" write your very best, regardless of whether or not you think one entry is better or worse than others. Write emotionally/passionately vs. dry. Trust your gut (it's working on muscle memory of the storytelling elements you've learned, even subconsciously through reading, that work or not). And make 'em cry.


Make 'em cry.
Well, I don't know about others, but I sat here in the dark this morning wiping my eyes because I killed off a character that hadn't seen as many days as he should have. The scene took ten minutes to write, so I knew what was coming for a while. Now I have to edit it to properly draw it out for the reader who will fly over those same words in thirty seconds.

This scene wasn't in my initial plans for this story, but the above mantra never leaves my mind, so I worked it in. Same way you need to work in your high concept, your theme, your emotional constituents, your details, your world. If you have a story to tell, plug it in.

Darn tootin I write for the contest. I read nothing but the anthos. (And my crit group's hopefuls.) I plan to remain firmly planted in this headspace until I win or pro out.
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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby Martin L. Shoemaker » Thu Oct 27, 2011 12:01 pm

Dustin Adams wrote:Well, I don't know about others, but I sat here in the dark this morning wiping my eyes because I killed off a character that hadn't seen as many days as he should have. The scene took ten minutes to write, so I knew what was coming for a while. Now I have to edit it to properly draw it out for the reader who will fly over those same words in thirty seconds.

This scene wasn't in my initial plans for this story, but the above mantra never leaves my mind, so I worked it in. Same way you need to work in your high concept, your theme, your emotional constituents, your details, your world. If you have a story to tell, plug it in.


Without revealing any identifying details (I hope)... In my Q4, I killed off a character whom I didn't have a clue was going to die. None at all. In fact, I started out not even knowing this character existed, and then adding him as a minor character in a scene. And slowly he took over the story, to the point where he was second only to the narrator in significance in the story. And suddenly in one critical scene, when the narrator was reeling from events, he looked around; and I realized the only logical thing for him to see was that character, dead. And suddenly, that character's fate made perfect retroactive sense. When I reread the story, I can see it coming. But I didn't when I wrote it.
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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby Martin L. Shoemaker » Fri Oct 28, 2011 7:11 pm

Dustin Adams wrote:Note on the URL: There are some ads, not pop-ups, but a little frustrating.
http://www.cracked.com/article_14790_the-best-worst-fantasy-science-fiction-book-covers.html
There's also some cursing, but it's used to comic effect. Click at your own eye peril.


Never -- under any circumstances -- post a link to cracked.com. That site can bring the productivity of the civilized world crashing to the ground. They have a most insidious mastery of the art of recommendations. I can never manage to just read ONE article there. It's always one, then three more, than seven, then twenty, then...

Growing up, I read comics and magazines that my brother bought; and at that time, Cracked was always a sad, lame Mad wannabe. How they went from there to being the Evil Humor Overlords continues to amaze me.
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WRITE! WRITE! WRITE! WRITE! WRITE!
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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby s_c_baker » Fri Oct 28, 2011 7:21 pm

Martin L. Shoemaker wrote:
Dustin Adams wrote:Note on the URL: There are some ads, not pop-ups, but a little frustrating.
http://www.cracked.com/article_14790_the-best-worst-fantasy-science-fiction-book-covers.html
There's also some cursing, but it's used to comic effect. Click at your own eye peril.


Never -- under any circumstances -- post a link to cracked.com. That site can bring the productivity of the civilized world crashing to the ground. They have a most insidious mastery of the art of recommendations. I can never manage to just read ONE article there. It's always one, then three more, than seven, then twenty, then...

Growing up, I read comics and magazines that my brother bought; and at that time, Cracked was always a sad, lame Mad wannabe. How they went from there to being the Evil Humor Overlords continues to amaze me.


The power of the Internet! (read: user-created content)

And, er... what productivity? wotf018
Stewart C Baker - 1st place, Q2 V32
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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby Martin L. Shoemaker » Fri Oct 28, 2011 7:58 pm

s_c_baker wrote:And, er... what productivity? wotf018


I currently have 22 cracked.com windows open, having already read and closed 6 more.

Thanks, Dustin... You're evil...
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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby klaatu » Fri Oct 28, 2011 10:36 pm

Martin L. Shoemaker wrote:Growing up, I read comics and magazines that my brother bought; and at that time, Cracked was always a sad, lame Mad wannabe. How they went from there to being the Evil Humor Overlords continues to amaze me.


I hate to quibble, but I wouldn't it the same product. It's a new and separate endeavor that happens to have the same name, solely because the current owners purchased the name.

As an analogy... John Smith, Jr. has a claim to be the heir of his father, John Smith, Sr. But if another, unrelated John Smith comes along, we wouldn't call him an heir as well, even if he admired and emulated John Smith, Sr.

Actually it changed towards the end of its print-life, when editor and ownership changed. And as Lampoon disappeared, it started heading down that road. I understand it changed ownership once more before it was relaunched on the net.

Yeah, it was always the weaker cousin of Mad - Although John Severin is a talented artist that carried Cracked (as it didn't have the money to pay more artists of the calibre that Mad owned. Although Don Martin worked for them for a while after his falling out with Mad.

Hehehehe ;)


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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby Martin L. Shoemaker » Sat Oct 29, 2011 4:26 am

klaatu wrote:I hate to quibble, but I wouldn't it the same product. It's a new and separate endeavor that happens to have the same name, solely because the current owners purchased the name.


Touche! I didn't know that.

Yeah, it was always the weaker cousin of Mad - Although John Severin is a talented artist that carried Cracked (as it didn't have the money to pay more artists of the calibre that Mad owned. Although Don Martin worked for them for a while after his falling out with Mad.


I don't remember much of it at all. I just remember being let down a lot. Where Mad would make me laugh with at least half the articles, Cracked was good for around one laugh per issue.
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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby steffenwolf » Mon Nov 14, 2011 6:41 am

And my Q1 entry is on its way to LA! Godspeed, little buddy.
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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby kyle » Mon Nov 14, 2011 7:24 am

Good luck, steffenwolf, though I still feel November is ridiculously early to enter. wotf001

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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby steffenwolf » Mon Nov 14, 2011 7:27 am

kyle wrote:Good luck, steffenwolf, though I still feel November is ridiculously early to enter. wotf001


I'm a ridiculously early kind of person. :) When I have a deadline, in any part of my life, I always prefer to just get the thing done now. This is actually rather late for me. The last quarter I submitted in the first week of the quarter. :)
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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby MJNL » Mon Nov 14, 2011 7:35 am

I was all set to go--since I wrote two stories last quarter that were appropriate for the contest I thought I'd just send one for Q4 and save the other for Q1. Especially since November and December always seem to be my busiest/least-productive-writing-wise months. But I couldn't just let the Q1 story sit around for three months, so I decided to send it off to a few other markets with quick turnarounds... and now it's stuck at Clarkesworld of all places.

So it's essentially ready, as long as it comes back.

I admire those who can just breeze past deadlines because they finished the work oh-so-long-ago. I'm usually a down to the very end kind of person--and I try to trick myself into subbing at a reasonable time by setting my own deadlines a couple of days out (which is working so far!).
~Marina

WotF Winner Q1 2012 (Vol. 29)

WotF Finalist Q2 2010 (Vol. 27)
WotF Finalist Q4 2011 (Vol. 28)
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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby Martin L. Shoemaker » Mon Nov 14, 2011 7:39 am

We have an unexpected luxury this quarter: it's possible that you can be a Q4 winner and know it before the end-of-quarter deadline. Not that I'm predicting it, or anything, but it's possible.

So it's just possible that one might not need to submit for Q1 at all... Not that that will stop me if we get close to deadline and I somehow miraculously am still waiting; but it's a reason I choose to sit back and relax for a while longer.
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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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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby Dustin Adams » Mon Nov 14, 2011 7:56 am

Marina,
You could do what I do, which is finish a story, edit it, rewrite it, edit it, rewrite it... So, yeah, I finish early, only I don't finish at all.

Got my Q1 back from my alpha yesterday... Complete rewrite coming. :(
I may not make Q1 at all.
And since I don't have a new idea burning a hole in my brain, I shall keep pounding on my present one.

Steffenwolf,
I remember Frank saying you work a quarter ahead. That's a nifty way of doing it. Make the first day of the new quarter your deadline, instead of the last day of the present quarter.
wotf009
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9x HM
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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby Strycher » Mon Nov 14, 2011 8:01 am

Dustin Adams wrote:Marina,
You could do what I do, which is finish a story, edit it, rewrite it, edit it, rewrite it... So, yeah, I finish early, only I don't finish at all.

Got my Q1 back from my alpha yesterday... Complete rewrite coming. :(
I may not make Q1 at all.
And since I don't have a new idea burning a hole in my brain, I shall keep pounding on my present one.


Might I suggest submitting this story to Q1 rather than go a quarter without a submission? I'm not saying that you can't rework it to your heart's content afterward. I'm merely suggesting that if you have a draft with a beginning, middle, end, and you've checked thoroughly for grammatical error, you should submit it. The worst case scenario is that you get a rejection, but if you don't submit you're in the same place as getting a rejection, only worse -- you didn't even try.

Maybe you submit it and keep working on it and by Q2 it's all polished. In the mean time you haven't no-showed in Q1.

Just a thought.

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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby Dustin Adams » Mon Nov 14, 2011 10:10 am

Strycher,
I'm pretty picky about what I send in. It's like an interview. If I know I'm not going to get the job, I don't show up. No matter how well dressed I am.
A reject on an idea means the idea has dead ended. So if I like the idea, I just skip a quarter and keep refining. It takes me a while to tell my story the way it's meant to be told. Unfortunately, it takes a few rewrites too.

Twice now I've learned my original drafts are from the wrong character's POV. That's a real kick in the pants. However, by the time I tell it right, I have a solid grounding in the world. At least subsequent drafts write fairly quickly.

I could either outline till I felt I had it right, or bang out a draft and see what people think. wotf012
2x Finalist
1x Semi
2x Silver
9x HM
Eight EDF stories. DSF: Flash1. Flash2. Short Story. My Semi-F

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Re: Q1 Volume 29

Postby steffenwolf » Mon Nov 14, 2011 10:19 am

Dustin Adams wrote:Marina,
Steffenwolf,
I remember Frank saying you work a quarter ahead. That's a nifty way of doing it. Make the first day of the new quarter your deadline, instead of the last day of the present quarter.
wotf009


Yup that's pretty much what I do. :) I'm in the last stages of getting the story done that I think will be my Q2. I'll still submit it to some of the quicker turnaround markets first like F&SF and Clarkesworld, like I usually do. :)
David Steffen

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