Well, the fire monkeys are through, for this go-round anyway. Shelved. Done and dusted. We wood monkeys, not predisposed to fire even if off a cousin, can breathe easier. Not easy, because now here comes 2017 and the Year of the Fire Rooster. Fire again, and no way can you trust a rooster other than to torch the hell out of a good night’s sleep come dawn.
Which is my way of saying 2017 should be a fun but tough year. There will be wonderful conferences to attend, my favorite October weekend on the Plaza, and word words words to write and read. And maybe more stories out there, if my offerings of dried corn to the 2017 Fire Rooster Submission Gods pay off.
As for 2016, I set some stretch goals, and by the dying embers of a fire monkey, I stuck to ’em. Here’s how things shook out:
NEW STORIES TO SUBMISSION READY: Goal of 4
Actually submitted: 3. I wrote a couple more, but so far editing hasn’t gotten them where they need to be. Experience confirms my ideas take their damn time. Let them grow, like pecan trees (at the risk of a new metaphor), and my stuff might land in some cool places. Maybe it’s a sign of wood monkey wisdom, not to fling stories out when they’re still poo.
Grade: C+. I just wasn’t in killer idea mode much.
OTHER DRAFTS TO SUBMISSION READY: Goal of 4
Actually submitted: 6. Here was where I’m proudest of what came together. None accepted yet, but I’m hopeful — come on, you sweet rooster.
2015 SUBMISSIONS KEPT ON KEEPING ON: 4
Actually saw through: 3, and 2 of those bad boys were accepted. Look for “Let It Burn” in AHMM soon, and “Happiness Is a Choice” made Mysterical-E last spring. The forced attention has the other 2 wa-ay better than a year ago.
NONFICTION PIECES PUBLISHED: 4
Actually saw through: 1.
A honking fun one on the Killer Nashville blog. All that time editing left no spare time for getting other writing out there. You win this one, fire monkey.
WEBSITE POSTS: 12
Actually posted: 12.
NOVEL TREATMENTS: 4
Actually treated: 0.
Never got there. Never wanted to. A monkey knows his own mind.
WRITING WEEKENDS: 26
Actually weekended: 27.
Butt in chair was never a problem.
CONFERENCES AND WRITER GUY APPEARANCES: 4
Actually appreared: 4 (Mobile Writers Guild, Killer Nashville, SinC Atlanta, .
I should do more of this. Probably could do. Talking writing is more rewarding than writing the writing. You learn more than you teach, in the moment.
OK, grades. Enough monkeying around. Good reading and writing to you, friends. Dawn comes early, and that fire rooster is a bastard.