Tag Archives: publishing

August 8 – It’s Here! It’s Here!

Today I came home to find a terrific surprise. I received my check and author copy of the Big Book of Bizarro, for the short story I sold (“Losing Control”, on page 392). It’s official. I’m a published author!

OMG. I’m still a bit freaked.

Okay. Deep breaths. Relax. It’s just a book, right? Ommmm….

All right, that didn’t work. I guess I’m just going to have to gush. I guess we’ll start with the acknowledgements. That’s what writers do, right. They thank all the little people who helped make it all happen. And by little people, I mean all the people who are so much cooler than I am that inspired me to be more like them. So where do I start?

I think I’ll start with Zombie Joe. He got me started. Last year he inspired me to finally start writing again. He got me into NaNoWriMo and hooked me up with a lot of local author types. And he kept me writing by providing a sounding board for me to talk about my stories and ideas, and by telling me cool stories about other authors he knows personally, like Jim Butcher, Mark Henry, and Alex Bledsoe. Thanks Joe!

I also want to thank one of my co-contributors to the anthology that my short story is appearing in, Mercy Loomis. She is also a member of my critique group, and gave me vital feedback that helped me make the story good enough to submit. Not only that, but she was the one that told me about the submission call in the first place. And then, if it wasn’t for her I might have backed out of submitting the story. Just before the deadline I started second-guessing myself and my story, thinking that it probably didn’t fit what they wanted. But she told me to submit it anyway, and she was right! And to top it all off, she gave me crucial advice when it came to signing my first contract. Thanks Mercy! (Her story is called “Succor the Child” on page 355, and it’s awesome!)

I also want to thank the rest of the critique group, Jesilea Ryan and Jenny Lowe. They also gave me a lot of help working out the issues with the story. It got stronger and better with each pass.

Next on my list are my family and friends that have been reading my stuff and giving me feedback. Their comments usually aren’t as focused or as helpful as my critique group, but it is nice to know I have their support.

I also want to thank my local librarians. They have also been really helpful and supportive as I have been working on my writing career. And they even promised to order a copy of the book so that everybody in Madison will be able to read our stories!

And last but not least, I want to thank the editors Rich Bottles Jr and Gary Lee Vincent for accepting my story and marking my debut into the world of publishing.

Now, who’s next?










The Big Book of Bizarro


I just killed off my co-worker in my current short story/novella project, “The Hunt”. I’m still working on the ending, and I have already burned through three drafts of the beginning. Hopefully this will all coalesce into something worthwhile soon. I’ll see you all back here on Thursday for another update.


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Filed under Fiction, Networking, Submissions, The Writing Experience

ROW80 Status – Day 27 (Jan 29)

I’m still plugging along. It’s hard sometimes to get my writing time in. I want to take a break and watch videos or just go to bed early for a change. But I don’t. I know that if I keep at it I will become a better writer. And if I am a better writer I have a better chance of being published. And if I get published I can hold my head up high with all my other crazy author friends that know how hard it is to stick to it and keep writing every day.

  • Finding Valhalla – 56,130 words
  • Six Days To Sabbath – 1,677 words

Another two or three weeks (OK, maybe four) and I should be done with Finding Valhalla. Then my main focus will be on Six Days To Sabbath. I’ll also start editing Dragons at Dawn. So far only friends and family have read my work. Once I do my first edit run I’ll probably ask if anyone wants to volunteer to critique it. Keep watching my blog or follow me on Twitter (@BSRPG) for the announcement.

I also had an idea for a new story in a dream this morning. I’ll tell you all about that tomorrow, when I discuss using dreams for inspiration. See you then!


Filed under ROW80

Breaking Ground

Ladies and Gentlemen, Children of All Ages! Gather around for wonders never seen before by man or beast! The things you will see here will boggle your mind and baffle your senses!

Now that I have your attention, let me tell you what is really happening here.

Last month I participated in National Novel Writing Month, or NaNoWriMo, as it is “affectionately” called (usually when they aren’t cursing the day they ever signed up).  The objective was to write a story of 50,000 words in one month. Not a really long novel, but long enough.

Now, if you are like me, you have been telling yourself for years that “some day I’m going to write a novel.” Well, NaNoWriMo gave me the excuse to actually do it. The other incentive I had was that a new friend of mine was participating, and I thought it would be cool to see if I could do it too.

Of course, I didn’t sign up until halfway through October, so I didn’t have a lot of time to prepare. Those two weeks were probably worse for me than after I actually started writing. I wasn’t supposed to do any writing before November 1, but I could plan. So I planned. I decided on a basic plot device, figured out some main characters, decided on names, and started a basic outline of the story.

Then November 1 came and I started writing. I went to Starbucks for the first time for a kickoff meeting and met some other local writers. I got hooked on their Caramel Apple Spice and their low-fat Very Berry coffee cake. I even got a little writing done while I was there. The next few days were pretty hectic, trying to do some writing before work, on my breaks at work, and after work, either at home or at some other “write-in” location, like Barriques or Culvers. And slowly but surely my story took on a life of its own.

That’s right. Most of the planning I did in October was useless. Either I didn’t use it at all, or I needed something that I hadn’t thought of. My characters didn’t do what I told them to do, instead they told me what they were doing. This was a little bit frustrating at first, but then I decided it was probably better that way. You see, many published authors will tell you the same thing. They say that once you actually get to know your characters they take over and all you have to do is write their story.

In case you were wondering, I finished the story at about 50,200 words. Barely long enough for a “win”, and personally I think the story sucks. But the experience was worth it. It taught me first that I can write a novel. And second, I learned a lot about writing during that month. As a matter of fact, I actually finished the story in three weeks, so I started another one. I’m working on it now and I like it a lot better than my first effort. As a matter of fact, I should be working on it now, instead of writing this blog….

So here’s the point of this story. I’m finding out a lot about writing that I want to share with you. I’ll also share my experiences with editing once I start that phase off this project. And finally, if things go well, I will share a few things about publishing. I may not land a contract with Harlequin or Random House, but if nothing else I think I’ll give self-publishing a shot.

So now that we have broken ground on this project, I hope you will join me as this Author in Progress tries to complete a finished work. Wish me luck!

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Filed under About Me, The Writing Experience