It’s that time of year again. I’m starting to see “year-in-review” blog posts popping up all over writer blogs everywhere. I really enjoy the process of reviewing the year’s progress, the failures, the triumphs. I like looking at the numbers, too. I usually find them encouraging — even if the rejection pile stacks far, far above the sales pile, which is usually the case.
So without further babbling, here’s my 2013 Year in Review!
- I received 91 rejections (or a few more, I’m taking this number from my Duotrope stats — but some markets aren’t listed there).
- I sold 17 stories!
- 2 of those sales went to pro-paying markets: Read Short Fiction and Cricket.
- 6 of those stories went to semi-pro markets: Scigentasy, Spark: A Creative Anthology, Plasma Frequency Magazine, etc.
- I submitted stories 130 times (at least, that number may be a bit higher).
- 22 of my short stories were published over the course of the year.
- I wrote, edited and submitted my first* “requested” story.
- This was “The Balance Between Us”, published in Sidekicks!
- *Technically, I did my first such story in the fall of 2012. It was rejected and the same editor requested I write another story for the anthology.
- I completed the Story-a-Day May challenge for the third year in a row.
- This means, I wrote 31 stories in the 31 days of May…
- For a total of 80,976 words written that month.
- I’ve sold/had published 3 of those stories so far. I definitely want to work on getting more of them edited, submitted and sold — I think that’s where I failed a bit this year.
- I completed my weird western series, By the Gun.
- I wrote two of the four stories/installments in 2013
- All four stories have been sold to Spark: A Creative Anthology.
- Stories 1, 2 & 3 are already published in Volume I, II & III
- The fourth and final story is set to be published in Volume IV in January 2014.
- I started reading submissions for Plasma Frequency Magazine.
- I’ve already learned so much in the two months I’ve been working at PFM!
Comparison to 2012
In going back over my 2012 review post, there’s definitely some interesting things to note…
- In 2010, I received three acceptances.
- In 2011, I received roughly 14 acceptances.
- In 2012, I sold 19 stories.
- Note the change in terms: Last year I stopped using “received acceptances” and started saying “sold stories”.
- In 2013, as noted, I sold 17 stories.
- I’m not worried that I sold two less this year. I’ve been targeting pro markets almost exclusively, thus it’s harder to make sales. Also, I think it’s normal to have a bit of fluctuation.
- In my 2012 Year-in-Review post, I mentioned that I felt like I was on the edge of the next step. I was flush with confidence from three pro-paying sales (albeit, two were fledgling). I said, “By this time next year, I want to have a pro sale to a strong, well-known market.” I believe that my sale to Cricket meets that goal — it’s most definitely a pro sale and Cricket has been around and well-known for a while. So that’s definitely a success.
All in all, it’s been a fantastic year. As always, I feel I’ve progressed. Learned. Pushed forward. I still have so far to go. I’m thankful for a story I read recently on Scribophile that just blew me away and sat me back down in my place. It showed me how far I have yet to go. I feel, in some ways, that I’m in a better place than last year.
It’s going to be difficult to push into the markets I want to sell stories to, I know. I want to learn more. I want to excel. I want to find what I’m missing to reach higher. And yet, I feel as I always have, content with where I am. I’m not frustrated, though I’ll admit to having felt frustrated a few times this year. I’m looking to the future and ready to push forward.
Once again, my goal is to sell to a pro market, well-established: something like Shimmer or Nightmare or Daily Science Fiction. I hope this is the year that I get there. But for now, I’ll focus on doing what I can do. Concrete goals — writing, editing, submitting, and reading.
Thanks to each and every one of you wonderful people who took the time to read my blog this year, to comment, to read my stories, to encourage me. I am so thankful for each of you. You rock!
Here’s to next year!