In which there is a published poem and (almost) the end of a draft

First, the exciting news and some rare self-promo: one of my poems (the one I mentioned writing in this blog post) was accepted for publication by Wizards in Space Magazine!

I’ve had poems published before, but this is my list of credentials:

  • a couple anthologies for young poets in elementary and middle school
  • the literary publications of post-secondary schools I’ve attended
  • Queer As in Fuck You! which is the only one I count as “really” published, but also I’m friends with the editor-in-chief, help him out with the magazine, and workshopped my poem with him beforehand, so you see how I already had a foot in the door there. Or, like, both feet. Fully inside. Wiping themselves on the foyer carpet and kicking their shoes off and showing themselves to the kitchen for a Dr. Pepper because this isn’t the first time they’ve been here.

(Quick plug for Queer As in Fuck You!: we’re accepting submissions now through December 14! Click here for details. While you’re at it, follow us on Twitter or support us on Patreon.)

So this is the first time I’ve had a poem accepted for publication to a place I had no prior connection to, at least since 8th grade, which I don’t really count because…it was 8th grade. ALSO! Wizards in Space pays contributors, which is EXCITING AS FUCK.

I was excited enough to get my first rejection, from Nice Cage – both because the editors said they liked some things I was doing on the page and because a rejection means I’m a Real Writer now, right? So you can imagine how much more excited I was to get an acceptance, especially from a paying lit mag.

So if you love short stories, poetry, and inclusive spaces, if you’re looking for Christmas gifts, if you’d like to see my writing in print, or if you just like supporting indie publications, go donate to the magazine’s IndieGoGo campaign. My poem, “I miss the birds in winter,” will be featured in Issue 5, due out early in 2020.

Watch to learn more about Wizards in Space!

In other news, I meant to write a pre-NaNoWriMo post on a) my deep love for National Novel Writing Month and b) why letting yourself write badly is good for you. In fact, I wrote most of the post…and then got caught up in homework and noveling and never finished or posted it.

One of these years, maybe.

Anyway, I competed unofficially as a Rebel this year, in the hopes I could reach the end of Draft 3 of the Chosen Grandma story by November 30th. I set my goal for 12,000 words, which, alas, I exceeded. And the story still isn’t quite done. I am at least partway through the last chapter, so that’s good – and I should probably mention the fact that this chapter got no revision during Draft 2. It tied everything up too neatly and came out list-like and sugary, but I figured there was no point bothering with it until the rest of the story was more what it needed to be. It’s not like this wrap-up chapter affects what came before anyway (although it does result from it, which could be why it is,,,getting,,,sadder).

But I have to revise it eventually, so I started working with it again on November 29th and did a little more on the 30th in the hotel room after my high school reunion. Still not done, though. And I need to prioritize my last two papers and my various discussion posts at this point in the semester, especially since I spent Thanksgiving break doing essentially nothing.

Of course, the big bummer about the fact that this chapter isn’t done yet is that this draft is supposed to be shorter than the last, yet somehow, despite multiple cuts and combines made during Camp NaNo back in July, it’s ballooning again. Draft 1 clocked in at 160,000 words. Draft 2 was at 122,000, but I got it down to 110,000 with line edits before giving it to readers. Draft 3 is hovering at just below 120,000 right now and is going to be at least 120,000 (probably a bit longer) by the time it’s done.

On the plus side, Draft 3 is trash – especially the newly cut and combined middle bits – so I’ll be doing a Draft 3 1/2 before sending it to readers this time. With any luck that’ll actually be shorter. Like, 100k or less. I have plans to combine two characters into one, so that should help. Hopefully. I mean, I thought combining two events would make it shorter, and that,,,did not,,,work.

But then of course I’ll be doing line edits so it’s as Pretty As Possible before readers get it. So that should actually help.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is 9235b-insecure2bwriters2bsupport2bgroup2bbadge.jpg

Do you blog about writing? Join the Insecure Writer’s Support Group and become part of the monthly blog hop! Click here for a list of this month’s posts. (Powered by Linky Tools.)

12 thoughts on “In which there is a published poem and (almost) the end of a draft

    1. Thanks! I’m definitely ready to get my stuff out there (but maybe I only feel that way because I’ve only had 1 rejection so far – might feel a bit different once it’s 100!)


  1. Congrats on the acceptance of your piece! That’s awesome! And I wouldn’t discount yourself on the earlier publications. Sometimes getting somewhere is about knowing the right people. And I think that’s ok. (Tho often we want our work to stand on our own, but the world is as it is.)

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s