Julie's Quest

Hello, and welcome to my blog. My blog is about the trials and tribulations of writing, where we celebrate successes and commiserate our near misses. We tell it like it is here and will do our very best to help you on the road to being published and pick you up after the rejections (they will come!) Whether you are a professional or amateur writer you will find something useful here.

I hope you enjoy reading my posts and will visit again soon.

Happy Writing

Julie Phillips - freelance writer - member of the Association of Freelance Writers - member of the Society of Authors

Monday, 24 August 2009

Short story mad

Help. I've gone short story mad! I started editing some short stories yesterday and all of a sudden I had all of these short story ideas popping into my head and they won't stop! Consequently I've sent two short stories off to Take A Break, one to Woman's Weekly and another to People's Friend Children's Corner. I also emailed one to That's Life in Australia this morning. I have several more that need editing and while I'm on a roll I think I'll get some of them edited and sent off this week while the iron's hot.

This happens sometimes. I don't write or send a short story off for weeks and then I see all the successes flagged up on the various blogs I follow - I read the short stories in the fiction specials and I'm off again! It really is such an inspiration when other writers get their short stories published and lovely to read the stories penned by the names I recognise from the blogs.

It's nice to see that those who do get their short stories published are real life flesh and blood just like us and a lot of them have started out just like us too and they get published! They also still get rejections just like we do too, albeit a lot less than I do I should think.

So what I'm trying to say is, you can and will get published just like those other short story writers. It takes time, a lot of hard work and practice learning the ropes, determination to improve your writing - which involves listening and taking on board what those who are published say and incorporating it into your own writing. It won't happen over night and even though I am yet to get another short story published - the rejections haven't detered me in the slightest. I might find them frustrating and fall to my knees, tearing at my hair screaming "Why? Why? WHY?! at the postman everytime he drops another rejection through my letter box! But I also remember how good it felt when I got that one short story accepted. So keep writing and keep sending your short stories out - I am. Never say never!

PS I went through my list of short story submissions the other day and,just to make everyone feel better, since November 2008 I have submitted thirty short stories to the women's magazines and had only one published. I currently have fourteen out there waiting for a yes or no. I have submitted six stories to competitions with no joy, and have two under consideration with an anthology. So there you go, warts and all! I'm sure I'm not the only one. But if I can still sit here typing away regardless of the stats then so can you.

So off we go, back to our notebooks and computers, ready to write and edit the next batch of short stories to send out. Don't forget to buy plenty of stamps and envelopes - we're going to need them!

Julie xx


Teresa Ashby said...

That's brilliant Julie! All that hard work is going to pay off.

Word is scara! which apparently is a robot!!

Julie P said...

Thanks, Teresa! I like that word Scara - it's a great sci-fi character name! I had a 'tastain' earlier it sounds like a withering look as in "she looked at him with tastain."

These words are such fun.

Olivia Ryan said...

Well done Julie! The main thing is getting lots of stories out there - and yes, definitely striking while the iron's hot and you're getting all those ideas. Then you don't panic so much when you have a little while with less ideas! You're absolutely right that we all get rejections - and we all had to start the same way, nobody is born a successful writer and very few get there without serving an 'apprenticeship'. You're doing great. x

Suzanne Jones said...

Well done, Julie. And so brave and helpful to post your stats - I was thinking about doing mine last new year, but chickened out (to be honest, I didn't have much to report). I'll do it this year for sure.

ps frous

Julie P said...

Thanks, Olivia. You've done remarkably well - I wouldn't even consider writing a novel at the moment! You're right. It is an apprenticeship - and one we all have to go through. It's nice to have the support of other writers on the blogs too.

Julie xx

Julie P said...

Thanks, Suzanne. I did consider whether I should publish my stats or not for quite some time. But then I decided to go with it as I have nothing to be ashamed of and if it helps other writers who are not getting published to carry on submitting then I don't mind other people knowing how many rejections I get.

This blog is to celebrate the successes and the near misses - so it was only fair for me to tell the truth and the whole truth! It's quite liberating, actually, so go on Suzanne! They can't be any worse than my 'failure' rate!

Frous? Mmmm will have to think about that one.

Julie xx

Suzanne Jones said...

Nothing to be ashamed of, but loads to be proud of. And, yes, it does help to know I'm not the only one getting work declined - it's such a lonely business you tend to lose touch with reality.

Don't know what you've started with the verification words, but I've been so tempted to add them to comments on other people's blogs.


Simon Whaley said...

Julie, I think you should create a "Dictionary of Google Word Verifications".

Alternatively, why not pick the ones that sound really menacing and then you can bellow them loudly at the postman when he delivers any rejections. At least that way, you can't offend him!

(My verification is 'Comyor'. Sounds more like local dialect that a profanity!)

Julie P said...

Hi, Simon! Yup I shall get working on the dictionary, and any contributions from people who have a verification word and a likely definition will be gladly recieved!

Our postman is a young lad called Joe and he's lovely so I try not to bellow in his vicinity as I don't want to frighten the poor chap. I usually wait until he's left the area before I let rip!

Comya. "Ere, comya ere ya whipper snapper an' 'ave a jammy nut!"

Julie xx

Karen said...

It's really interesting (and reassuring) to hear stories like this!

I belong to an online writing group and we do post our rejections as well as our acceptances on there, but not on our main blogs! Maybe we should ...

Julie P said...

Hi, Deb. Yes! Put them on your blog as well. It's very therapeutic. You realise that you're not alone. There's no "oh look I've had more published than you so nah nah ne nah nah on here! Everyone is so supportive it just really spurs me on to write, and send off more stories.

Julie xx

Julie P said...

Sorry, Karen! I don't know why I called you Deb?!! I am losing it - don't worry, normal transmission shall resume shortly!!

Julie xx