Anyway, it's lovely to receive another publication, particularly such a beautifully put together one, with one of my stories in it (and I got paid too!). The only trouble is there's nothing left on my list of 'publications I'm waiting for' now it's appeared :o(
Because I've been so busy with my novel(s) since December my sub rate for stories has dropped massively. Whereas I used to sub about 15 stories or flashes a month that rate has now dropped to about two (if I'm lucky). I haven't subbed anything to competitions either, apart from three flashes (I really want the writing retreat holiday that is the prize for the Biscuit Publishing comp). That said I do have 11 subs out there so I've still got a reason to compulsively check the post every morning to see if anything's come back.
Eurofiction (Slingink's 10 story competition) is now over. I've already subbed one of the 10 stories I wrote over 20 weeks but there are a few more in there that can be edited and subbed so that's something to do while I mull over novel #2.
Talking of which...
I've been hearing good stuff about Cornerstones recently (an editorial/critique service for unpublished authors) and when I heard that Helen Corner, the woman who runs the business, had published a 'How to' book I had to rush out and get it. I know, I know I've already got tons of 'How to' books on the craft of writing but I was sucked in by the Amazon reviews and the fact there's a section on agents and publishers that is relevant to the UK market (most of the How to books I've got are written by Americans).
Anyway, I've been reading through it and I'm finding it fantastically helpful when it comes to thinking through novel #2. Most of what's in the book I've read before (show don't tell, POV etc) but, unlike most of my other books, it's aimed purely at the commercial author. The sections on Plot and Structure, Planning Your Story and Great Openings really got me thinking about the shape of my novel and whether the idea I've got fits the 3 Act Structure. All good stuff.
I've also ordered (but they haven't arrived yet) The Writers' Book of Hope (as mentioned in one of my previous posts) to give me a little boost (I might need it if all the agents I've sent novel #1 to hate it ;o)) and books by Rowan Coleman, Kate Harrison and Lucy Diamond. These girls know what they're doing when it comes to commercial fiction and studying 'How to' books is one thing but it's equally important to read (and study) bestselling fiction in the genre you're writing.
Hmmm... so much for this post being 'just a quickie'! Right, the cupboards are bare so I'm off to the supermarket. Oh glamorous, glamorous writer's life.