Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Something different tonight

Alright guys,

Normally, I'll just spew something out and let you all look at it to your heart's content, but tonight, I come to you hat in hand, to ask you a question.

I have in my possession, a story that I have written. Not that this is anything strange, I normally have stuff I have written, but I have never felt that anything is worth trying to sell. This has changed, and I would like some input from my readers (all five of ya!).

I went through and started looking at submission guidelines for several "pro" markets, and since none of them do not allow simultaneous submissions, I need to figure out which one to submit to first. Let me know what you think:

- 6 to 8¢ per word
- Response time: ~5 weeks
- Esubs only
- counts towards membership with SFWA

- 6¢ per word
- Response time: ~5 weeks
- Esubs only
- counts towards membership with SFWA

- 10¢ per word (up to 4000), then 5¢ per word after
- Response time: ~2 days
- Esubs only
- counts towards membership with SFWA

Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction
- 6 to 9¢ per word
- Response time: ~8 weeks
- Must snailmail manuscript (no esubs)

Orson Scott Card's InterGalactic Medicine Show
- 6¢ per word
- Cannot republish for one year after acceptance
- Response time: ~3 months
- Esubs only
- counts towards membership with SFWA

- 5¢ per word
- Response time: ~2 days for rejection, ~2 weeks for acceptance
- Esubs only

Strange Horizons
- 7¢ per word
- Response time: 70 days
- Closed to subs until early June
- Esubs only
- counts towards membership with SFWA

Tor Online
- 25¢ per first 5000 words, 15¢ next 5000, 10¢ after that
- Response time: slow (nothing more specific)
- looking for "Highly Professional Level[s]" of work
- counts towards membership with SFWA

look it over, let me know what you think.

Thanks folks.

Monday, May 23, 2011

A little light writing

So, I apparently got an excellent review on an entry I posted over at writing.com for the "It's So Bad, It's Good" contest, where the object was to write the most overwrought, one-dimensional, stereotypical, obnoxious story possible. Here's my entry.

One-eyed Bart swaggered into the bar, his hips swiveling like a diseased prostitute with an ill-fitting peg-leg three inches too short for her body, which was rather funny, as his peg-leg was three inches too short for his body.
Wobbling his way to the bar, there was much speculation about why he was called ‘One-Eyed Bart’ since he had two perfectly functioning eyes. Actually wasn’t all that fair to say he had two ‘perfect’ eyes, as one was a bit lazy. When the left eye looked straight ahead, the right was often examining the nuances to the bridge of his nose – not that it was something he always wanted to stare at, but given the circumstances, it was probably better than staring at the inside of his skull.
Bellying up to the bar, he waved the bartender over. The bartender, a grizzled old one dimensional type schlepped over, wiping out a glass with a towel that would have been considered clean five to seven years previous.
“Well, what’ll it be?” He asked, spitting into the glass and then wiping the inside some more.
“Vermouth... leave the bottle” Bart replied. He knew that when you bellied up to a bar, you always ordered whiskey. Bart wasn’t a whiskey drinker, but he felt that he needed to present a strong, dangerous veneer. He shuddered to think that anyone might discover his deep, dark secret. A secret he was willing to kill for. Not that he had, but he was pretty sure he would to kill to make sure nobody knew what it was.
As the bartender shuffled back over, he sized Bart up. “You look like a man who has a deep, dark secret that you would probably be willing to kill for.” Bart’s eyebrows transported themselves from their usual place above his eyes to somewhere in his hairline. Shocked by this relocation, Bart grunted an affirmative to the bartender’s question. Realizing he just revealed that he had a deep, dark secret, Bart fumed.
“Listen, I’ll let you fume in silence. I have to fade into the background like a poorly conceived character that the author threw in just to move the story along.” Bart watched the bartender blend into the background, taking on a sort of muted quality like the backgrounds of those old Looney Tunes cartoons.
Blowing the dust off the bottle, Bart drank deeply. He could tell it was old vermouth – the taste of stale spices mixed with the vinegar flavor of super old wine, because that’s what vermouth basically is – mulled wine. From what I’ve read, vermouth is great – when it’s fresh, which this stuff most definitely was not.
Gagging on the nasty liquor, Bart turned around to survey the bar. Across the way was a piano player with a pencil thin mustache that would have put Salvador Dali’s to shame, had Dali the foresight to wander into an authentic Hollywood rendering of an authentic western bar. On the stage, several painted women, who bore a passing resemblance to the now dead ex-wife of a disgraced preacher who was famous for defrauding his flock and boinking his secretary, who in turn did a tasty spread in Playboy that did nothing to keep pubescent boys focused on what they were supposed to be doing.
Looking annoyed at the narrator, Bart continued his examination of the bar, noticing several other groups that missed his gaze the first time he studied the room, even though the room only measured fifteen feet on a side. At one table was the local doctor, passed out and snoring loudly into the tabletop. Bart wasn’t totally sure he was the doctor, but judging from previous experience, if someone was passed out at a table, more than likely, the minute a doctor was needed, not only would he be a first class doctor, but a surgeon of the first class with hands of steel who could remove a bullet two centimeters from the human heart.
Another table had a group of rough customers, all playing poker. Each card player was uglier, meaner, and more dangerous than the last. Bart found it rather amazing as they were all sitting in a circle. As he watched, he saw one of the card players accuse another player of cheating, which was rather funny, as they were all cheating. Bart distinctly saw aces sticking out of jacket sleeves, hat brims, boots, and waistbands. The brawl quickly spread across the room, as people squared off against each other. One of the dancing floozies broke a bottle over top of an anonymous brawler that had apparently appeared solely for the purpose of the battle.
Shaking his head, Bart ducked, allowing a thrown combatant to sail over the top of the bar, only to crash into the mirror, shattering it into a million little pieces. Bart reveled at the fact that each sliver, each facet glittered and shone like the stars in a distant galaxy, only to slowly descend downward in a slivery rain of imminent injury and possible death. Bart had seen a man’s carotid artery get sliced once that way. The alcoholic doc was too slow to save the man, but the image of a bright crimson stream fountaining up and over the bar had stuck with him ever since.
Deciding that he had seen enough, Bart hobbled back out of the drinking/brawlhouse establishment. In the street, he turned to examine the sign overhead – “The Double Duce” he read out loud to himself, sounding like Sam Neil in Roadhouse. Slapping himself on the forehead, he realized that not only was he was at the wrong bar, but it was actually Sam Elliot that was in Roadhouse. Looking over, he saw the one he was supposed to be at.
Setting out, he trudge/hobbled his way next door to “The Cantina”, passing a sign stating “Welcome to Mos Eisley, a nice port town.” As he continued on, he passed a couple of deputies muttering “Those aren’t the Floyd boys we’re looking for.”