October Writing

Hey all. This is a quick post because it’s past midnight, and while I don’t really remember what it’s like to go to bed early, I can try.


At the end of September, when I talked about overcoming writer’s block, I said I was going to try something new here: setting myself monthly writing goals and reporting how I did. I’m trying to encourage myself, so I’m still not sure if this is the kind of accountability I want, but I’m giving it a try. Also, if you have any fun ideas for titles for these posts, let me know, because I’m drawing a blank.


So for October, my goal was to finish drafts of two short stories. The first story is a fantasy story, set in the same world as my story “Dissonance.” I’ve been working on this short story for about two years. Law school kept getting in the way. By the end of September, I had a reasonable second draft that needed a few more edits and a final polish before I could start submitting it to magazines. I finished up those edits and gave it that final polish last week, and sent it off for its first submission a few days ago. Yay!


The second story I was supposed to work on is the middle grade sci fi story I want to submit to this year’s Young Explorer’s Adventure Guide (the anthology where my story “Polaris in the Dark” was published). Submissions close on December 15 this year, so I was really hoping to have a complete first draft by the end of October. I made a lot of progress on this story, but in the last few days my workload for school and studying for the multistate professional responsibility exam overwhelmed me, and I didn’t quite finish the first draft. I’m hoping to finish in the next few days and send it off to beta readers.


In addition to the two short stories, I also completely redid my query and synopsis for my next round of querying agents for my middle grade fantasy novel. I participated in a Twitter pitch contest for diverse writers, and I’m planning to participate in a twitter pitch contest for kidlit next week. I also made a plan for finishing the first draft of my middle grade sci fi novel (next semester, when I should have more time) (more on that later). Finally, I discovered this weekly chat on Twitter, #StorySocial, where writers talk about specific topics every Wednesday night, and participating in those has been a lot of fun and as also helped motivate me to write. So even though I didn’t quite make the goal I set out for myself, this turned out to be a really productive month for me, especially considering my  crazy schedule.


I’m not doing National Novel Writing Month this November. As much as I love NaNoWriMo, I have the MPRE next Saturday and two papers due in the next two weeks, on top of my usual 300-ish pages of reading per week and hours at my internship at Analytical Space. And I’m trying to set reasonable goals for myself. So my only November writing goal is to totally finish my middle grade sci fi story. I’d like to submit it in early December and not at the last minute, and I don’t want to be fussing with it when I should be studying for finals in December.


So that’s it for October. Hope everybody had a happy Halloween. I’ll be back in the next few days with my October reading roundup, but I’m almost done the book I’m reading so I’m going to finish that (it’s still October until I go to sleep, right?), and then go to sleep under a mountain of flashcards.


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