Saturday, December 31, 2005

Good News, Bad News (But Not Totally Bad)

I was thinking of writing about Bob Denver today, but I think I'll put it off for later.

Eric Flint sent me a contract and said the check was being mailed out yesterday, so I will have official writing income next year. Good news, and a big burden of suspense lifted off my shoulders. I will probably turn around and immediately use a portion of the money to subscribe to Baen's Universe, just to show my support for the venue (and also, frankly, because I think I'll like the magazine - the stories I've seen them buying so far match my tastes pretty well).

In less good news, I just received notification that my entry in Writers of the Future made it as far as the quarter-finals, but did not advance higher. Positive: I made it a step further up the ladder than last time I tried. Negative: I didn't Win, Place or Show, and let's face it, unlike last time, I didn't enter this time just to be in the contest. I really thought I had something (although admittedly, something small - might it have placed higher if I'd developed the idea further, or if I'd written it in third person?). However, now that I know, I can turn around and shop that story out. It's still a good story, and it's a very saleable length.

Here's the tricky bit. Writers of the Future is the plum market - great money, great exposure, and a wonderful workshop. If I sell three short stories to major markets (and "Astromonkeys" counts as one), then I'm ineligible for the contest. But at the same time, should I be trying not to sell to major markets in order to maintain my eligibility for a contest I may never win. I think not. I've got another story in slush at Baen's, and I've got three more stories set to submit after New Year's Day. If two out of those four sell, I'm out of the running. I've lost some great opportunities, but I've got cash in hand.

Of course, another possibility is that none of them will sell, and I'll be eligible for the damn contest the rest of my life. *sigh*

Holidays always depress me.

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