Unexpected (and Unwanted) Downtime

I’ve just had a very expensive vacation. Two weeks off work because my spine had decided, rather aggressively, that it was through with all this bipedal shit and was going to let me know in the most painful way possible. Add to that prescription meds (which never killed the pain entirely) and physiotherapy (which is worth every penny), and February is pretty much a complete write-off. Wrote in snatches here and there but little of it useful, and managed some reading. I’m not happy with the productivity dip, but no point haranguing myself, either. (At least, that’s what my rational brain tells me. I’m not very good at listening to her.)

It has been expensive and frustrating.┬áJury’s out on whether or not it’s a nerve or a disc at the root of the problem, but overall things are slowly improving. I’ll take better. I’ll damn well take better over tears, I tell you what. Hell, I can sit now. There was a week of no sitting. Sitting is fantastic.

Any thoughts I’d had about applying to Paradise Lost — something that, frankly, holy cats could I use right now — are dust. Next year’s dreams.

As for submissions, while I’m sure this will seem modest or quaint to some, I’ve hit a personal best. I have five stories out at various places and recently got a very nice rejection from C.C. Finlay, editor of the upcoming Fantasy and Science Fiction August 2014 issue, on that unsellable story of mine. (Some day, story! Some day! *shakes fist*)

My goal this year is to beat the number of submissions I made last year by a wide margin. I’ve only been submitting stories since 2009 and generally it was one story here, one there. On a graph it would be a very flat, horizontal line. Then it bumped up to maybe 4 or 5 a year and never more than two stories. Last year I submitted eleven times, and so far, halfway through February, I’m sitting at seven submissions. (I’m taking the Until Hell Won’t Have It motto to heart.)

Today’s efforts will be to add a sixth story to my submission roster (and it’s gotta be now, as the deadline for this one market is tomorrow!) and I am hoping that after next week’s writing group meeting, I can bump that number up to seven. Looking at the numbers, I guess I’m on track for a 1 Sub/1 Week pledge, tho’ I will shy away from making it official.

Do better than last time is all I can ask of myself right now.

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