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Discussion: Q3 Volume 39

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James (Ease)
(@ease)
Posts: 497
Gold Star Member
 

I re-downloaded Otter.io, the free version, on my new phone (an Android) and it gets right 95% of what I say, while in a car doing 80mph+ on a highway, without any additional hardware!

 

I was pretty stunned. As driving is a large part of my day job, I strongly recommend it.

Pro-tip, think up rare but real world words to stand in for fantastical words beforehand. I.e., my MC "Glebysl" is "Glen" when I'm dictating. Then one find and replace on the PC afterwards corrects it all.

VOL 40 2nd Quarter: Third Place ("Ashes to Ashes, Blood to Carbonfiber")
Past submissions: R - HM - HM - HM - HM - HM - SHM - SHM
www.jd-writes.com
Kindle Vella - Ashes to Ashes, Earth to Kaybee

 
Posted : March 20, 2022 12:06 pm
Disgruntled Peony
(@disgruntledpeony)
Posts: 1283
Platinum Member
 
Posted by: @morgan-broadhead
Posted by: @angelslayah

Well, I got my Q2 in very early, and I recon to do something similar for Q3. Maybe this won't be a common feeling, but it seems to me, having it in well early eliminates any kinda, whadayacall it? "twitching" later. By the time judging comes around, it's already been in the cue so long, I can just keep on forgetting about it. So... I should chose something now, hum?

But nay, 'tis not so. The actual formula for twitchiness is:

# days submitted early
x pi
x r ^ (# current quarter)

The earlier you get your story in, the higher the twitching factor. Which is why I ALWAYS submit after 11PM the night of the deadline, or else just wait until the NEXT quarter, which is very likely what I'll end up doing this quarter.

I got to be a big fan of early subs, myself, mainly because: a) I started worrying about eligibility requirements, b) I'm notorious for losing track of time, and c) I've seen things go wrong before with the last day of submissions often enough I was paranoid about waiting. laughing  

If you are in difficulties with a book, try the element of surprise: attack it at an hour when it isn't expecting it. ~ H.G. Wells
If a person offend you, and you are in doubt as to whether it was intentional or not, do not resort to extreme measures; simply watch your chance and hit him with a brick. ~ Mark Twain
R, SF, SHM, SHM, SHM, F, R, HM, SHM, R, HM, R, F, SHM, SHM, SHM, SF, SHM, 1st Place (Q2 V38)
Ticknor Tales
Twitter
4th and Starlight: e-book | paperback

 
Posted : March 20, 2022 5:28 pm
Dragonchef, David Hankins, angelslayah and 3 people reacted
Disgruntled Peony
(@disgruntledpeony)
Posts: 1283
Platinum Member
 
Posted by: @doctorjest
Posted by: @martin-l-shoemaker

And that's liberating. Because you're not worried, you can actually think about the story.

And thinking about the stories means some pretty good stories! Many 24-hour stories have been published. Mine was selected as a finalist in the Year's Best Science Fiction and Adventure Stories volume 4.

This is intriguing to me. When I look back at my writing, and the stories I've written, I'd say that I still feel often that I'm at a point where I frequently write pretty well--but the stories I'm writing are too often just so-so. More specifically, I have had a tendency to take an idea, and then select the wrong entry-point to exploring that idea, without really questioning that until I'm already well into the process of writing it. I get locked into trying to make this specific version of the idea work exactly how I want, when it's sometimes not the version of the idea I should be writing.

I think this has improved for me recently--a product mostly of me forcing myself to look at my work's weakest points, and still too recent for me to have a lot of confidence in how much it has improved--but it's still where I believe I most need to improve. I'm stumbling around this, but trying. Of the stories I finished in the last few months, fully three-quarters are either complete rewrites of stories, or are shelved because they need such a rewrite. The same ideas, but with either new entry-points or some fundamental change in how the subject is being handled.

But I think the resulting stories either have been better, or will be better, as a result of this--and I think that what I'm learning by doing this may help me to get to a point where, in the future, I start the stories at this point, with the right ideas and the right frame.

I'm actually doing exactly this right now, though, with the novel project I kicked off. Writing scenes, sections, exploring characters, and all with zero expectation that anything I'm writing will need to be retained. And it is certainly liberating. I've still not done this often with my short stories--but I would like to note that the last story I wrote, truly expecting that it might end up being nothing more than throw-away nonsense that I would do nothing with, made Finalist here. So while it's purely anecdotal, it does feel like there's more than a hint of something to all of this.

This is very much a YMMV type of thing, but my first finalist story was also the first story where I ended up being willing to rewrite every scene at least once because I realized they weren't having the emotional impact I wanted and I figured out ways to make them better. I don't have to do that kind of rewriting NEARLY as often these days, but in my case, the willingness to be "wrong" because I can fix it later if need be is important for my process. (But I do try to avoid rewriting entire stories unless it's absolutely necessary, for fairly obvious reasons. That's a lot of work. giggle )

If you are in difficulties with a book, try the element of surprise: attack it at an hour when it isn't expecting it. ~ H.G. Wells
If a person offend you, and you are in doubt as to whether it was intentional or not, do not resort to extreme measures; simply watch your chance and hit him with a brick. ~ Mark Twain
R, SF, SHM, SHM, SHM, F, R, HM, SHM, R, HM, R, F, SHM, SHM, SHM, SF, SHM, 1st Place (Q2 V38)
Ticknor Tales
Twitter
4th and Starlight: e-book | paperback

 
Posted : March 20, 2022 5:47 pm
David Hankins, James (Ease), storysinger and 1 people reacted
Cray Dimensional
(@craydimensional)
Posts: 693
Platinum Member
 

Just trying to find heart of story right now. Attempting KYD on it.

Small steps add up to miles.
V38: R, R, HM, HM
V39: RWC, HM, HM, SHM
V40 : HM, RWC, R, HM
V41 : RWC, P, P
"Amore For Life" in After the Gold Rush Third Flatiron Anthology
"Freedom’s Song” in Troubadour and Space Princesses LTUE Anthology
"Experimenting with the Dance of Death" in Love is Complicated LUW Romance Anthology.

 
Posted : March 20, 2022 6:13 pm
James (Ease)
(@ease)
Posts: 497
Gold Star Member
 

@disgruntledpeony Forget First World Problems, this is Great Writer Problems!

VOL 40 2nd Quarter: Third Place ("Ashes to Ashes, Blood to Carbonfiber")
Past submissions: R - HM - HM - HM - HM - HM - SHM - SHM
www.jd-writes.com
Kindle Vella - Ashes to Ashes, Earth to Kaybee

 
Posted : March 21, 2022 5:32 am
angelslayah reacted
angelslayah
(@angelslayah)
Posts: 252
Silver Star Member
 

@wulfmoon

Didn't know about the death in the family. My condolences.

@DonMarkmaker

 
Posted : March 21, 2022 12:31 pm
Wulf Moon reacted
(@wulfmoon)
Posts: 3211
Platinum Plus Moderator
 
Posted by: @angelslayah

@wulfmoon

Didn't know about the death in the family. My condolences.

Thank you. ?

Click here to JOIN THE WULF PACK!
"Super-Duper Moongirl and the Amazing Moon Dawdler" won Best SFF Story of 2019! Read it in Writers of the Future, Vol. 35. Order HERE!
Need writing help? My award-winning SUPER SECRETS articles are FREE in DreamForge.
IT’S HERE! Many have been begged me to publish the Super Secrets of Writing. How to Write a Howling Good Story is now a #1 BESTSELLING BOOK! Get yours at your favorite retailer HERE!

 
Posted : March 21, 2022 12:44 pm
pdblake
(@pdblake)
Posts: 482
Gold Member
 

I have my Q3 ready. I'll hide it away so I can give it another quick glance nearer submitting time.

R:6 RWC:1 HM:9 SHM:3
My Blog
Small Gods and Little Demons - Parsec Issue #10

 
Posted : March 24, 2022 9:29 am
(@wulfmoon)
Posts: 3211
Platinum Plus Moderator
 
Posted by: @pdblake

I have my Q3 ready. I'll hide it away so I can give it another quick glance nearer submitting time.

Letting a manuscript sit for a bit is an excellent idea. I used to let mine sit for at least a minute before submitting them. ?

Click here to JOIN THE WULF PACK!
"Super-Duper Moongirl and the Amazing Moon Dawdler" won Best SFF Story of 2019! Read it in Writers of the Future, Vol. 35. Order HERE!
Need writing help? My award-winning SUPER SECRETS articles are FREE in DreamForge.
IT’S HERE! Many have been begged me to publish the Super Secrets of Writing. How to Write a Howling Good Story is now a #1 BESTSELLING BOOK! Get yours at your favorite retailer HERE!

 
Posted : March 24, 2022 11:59 am
David Hankins, DoctorJest, MarathonCoder and 1 people reacted
DoctorJest
(@doctorjest)
Posts: 838
Platinum Member
 
Posted by: @wulfmoon
Posted by: @pdblake

I have my Q3 ready. I'll hide it away so I can give it another quick glance nearer submitting time.

Letting a manuscript sit for a bit is an excellent idea. I used to let mine sit for at least a minute before submitting them. ?

If only I had this level of restraint!

DQ:0 / R:0 / RWC:0 / HM:15 / SHM:7 / SF:1 / F:1
Published prior WotF entries: PodCastle, HFQ, Abyss & Apex
Currently on a writing hiatus

 
Posted : March 24, 2022 5:23 pm
Wulf Moon reacted
pdblake
(@pdblake)
Posts: 482
Gold Member
 
Posted by: @doctorjest
Posted by: @wulfmoon
Posted by: @pdblake

I have my Q3 ready. I'll hide it away so I can give it another quick glance nearer submitting time.

Letting a manuscript sit for a bit is an excellent idea. I used to let mine sit for at least a minute before submitting them. ?

If only I had this level of restraint!

The novel I'm currently editing sat for almost two years. 

R:6 RWC:1 HM:9 SHM:3
My Blog
Small Gods and Little Demons - Parsec Issue #10

 
Posted : March 25, 2022 1:06 am
DoctorJest reacted
DoctorJest
(@doctorjest)
Posts: 838
Platinum Member
 
Posted by: @pdblake
Posted by: @doctorjest
Posted by: @wulfmoon
Posted by: @pdblake

I have my Q3 ready. I'll hide it away so I can give it another quick glance nearer submitting time.

Letting a manuscript sit for a bit is an excellent idea. I used to let mine sit for at least a minute before submitting them. ?

If only I had this level of restraint!

The novel I'm currently editing sat for almost two years. 

That may even be excessive restraint.

DQ:0 / R:0 / RWC:0 / HM:15 / SHM:7 / SF:1 / F:1
Published prior WotF entries: PodCastle, HFQ, Abyss & Apex
Currently on a writing hiatus

 
Posted : March 25, 2022 7:51 pm
Wulf Moon reacted
pdblake
(@pdblake)
Posts: 482
Gold Member
 
Posted by: @doctorjest
Posted by: @pdblake
Posted by: @doctorjest
Posted by: @wulfmoon
Posted by: @pdblake

I have my Q3 ready. I'll hide it away so I can give it another quick glance nearer submitting time.

Letting a manuscript sit for a bit is an excellent idea. I used to let mine sit for at least a minute before submitting them. ?

If only I had this level of restraint!

The novel I'm currently editing sat for almost two years. 

That may even be excessive restraint

Forgetfulness

R:6 RWC:1 HM:9 SHM:3
My Blog
Small Gods and Little Demons - Parsec Issue #10

 
Posted : March 26, 2022 12:48 am
Wulf Moon reacted
LCWhelchel
(@earthkeeper78)
Posts: 76
Bronze Star Member
 

I have no idea how, but this morning I got hit with a sudden bolt of inspiration. I finally have my idea for Q3, and it feels like a solid hit. Just need to fine tune which characters will have the most impact and the plot I wanna use before I start putting words on processor. Wish me luck!

"Trust is like a shop. Difficult to build, but surprisingly easy to ruin. But when it is strong and true, there are few things in this world that make you feel stronger."
HM - V37/Q4, V38/Q4, V39/Q1
SHM - V38/Q3

 
Posted : March 30, 2022 4:50 pm
James (Ease), David Hankins, Wulf Moon and 2 people reacted
angelslayah
(@angelslayah)
Posts: 252
Silver Star Member
 

I thought I'd take advantage of the "Other Items" in the remit of Contest - Quarterly Topics and O.I. to just say, here, where I'm more active, that I have a request for readers over in Story Crit Exchange on the Forum.

That is all!

tongue

 

@DonMarkmaker

 
Posted : March 30, 2022 6:33 pm
Cray Dimensional
(@craydimensional)
Posts: 693
Platinum Member
 

I think I have a good idea for Q3. Working on narrowing down to the heart to expand.

Small steps add up to miles.
V38: R, R, HM, HM
V39: RWC, HM, HM, SHM
V40 : HM, RWC, R, HM
V41 : RWC, P, P
"Amore For Life" in After the Gold Rush Third Flatiron Anthology
"Freedom’s Song” in Troubadour and Space Princesses LTUE Anthology
"Experimenting with the Dance of Death" in Love is Complicated LUW Romance Anthology.

 
Posted : March 30, 2022 7:39 pm
James (Ease), David Hankins, Wulf Moon and 1 people reacted
James (Ease)
(@ease)
Posts: 497
Gold Star Member
 

I'm 5,800 words into Q3! I'm doing so great!

Please completely disregard that this was meant to be my Q2 and I had to push it back because it was only 40% done... 

VOL 40 2nd Quarter: Third Place ("Ashes to Ashes, Blood to Carbonfiber")
Past submissions: R - HM - HM - HM - HM - HM - SHM - SHM
www.jd-writes.com
Kindle Vella - Ashes to Ashes, Earth to Kaybee

 
Posted : April 1, 2022 10:25 am
(@aidanka)
Posts: 54
Bronze Member
 

I want to start writing for Q3 today. I just wonder if historical fantasy stories ever won? I can't remember any historical stories in the volumes that I've read in the past.

 
Posted : April 1, 2022 12:07 pm
pdblake
(@pdblake)
Posts: 482
Gold Member
 
Posted by: @aidanka

I want to start writing for Q3 today. I just wonder if historical fantasy stories ever won? I can't remember any historical stories in the volumes that I've read in the past.

There was one that was a jack the ripper/cthulhu kind of thing set on the Titanic. Can't remember the title or volume but it was a good story. 

R:6 RWC:1 HM:9 SHM:3
My Blog
Small Gods and Little Demons - Parsec Issue #10

 
Posted : April 1, 2022 12:21 pm
James (Ease) reacted
(@aidanka)
Posts: 54
Bronze Member
 

@pdblake ahh thank you))

so, this time I'll try my luck with a historical something. but it will be well a few centuries ago than Titanic

 
Posted : April 1, 2022 12:41 pm
James (Ease)
(@ease)
Posts: 497
Gold Star Member
 
Posted by: @pdblake
Posted by: @aidanka

I want to start writing for Q3 today. I just wonder if historical fantasy stories ever won? I can't remember any historical stories in the volumes that I've read in the past.

There was one that was a jack the ripper/cthulhu kind of thing set on the Titanic. Can't remember the title or volume but it was a good story. 

I think that was vol 37. Might be vol 36. Definitely one of those two. Personally wasn't a fan. The writing was fine, but anything cthulu-based just seems a little lazy to me.

VOL 40 2nd Quarter: Third Place ("Ashes to Ashes, Blood to Carbonfiber")
Past submissions: R - HM - HM - HM - HM - HM - SHM - SHM
www.jd-writes.com
Kindle Vella - Ashes to Ashes, Earth to Kaybee

 
Posted : April 1, 2022 12:42 pm
(@aidanka)
Posts: 54
Bronze Member
 

@ease mm thank you) I'll look it up. Mine will be about very niche place and era. I'm glad that they accept historical stories

 
Posted : April 1, 2022 1:04 pm
Dustin Adams
(@tj_knight)
Posts: 1382
Platinum Plus Moderator
Topic starter
 
Posted by: @ease

I'm 5,800 words into Q3! I'm doing so great!

Please completely disregard that this was meant to be my Q2 and I had to push it back because it was only 40% done... 

I finished my Q3 today!

Nevermind that it's April 1... ? 

 

Career:

1x Win
2x NW-F
2x S-F
9x S-HM
11x HM
7x R

 
Posted : April 1, 2022 1:05 pm
James (Ease), Wulf Moon, DoctorJest and 1 people reacted
(@aidanka)
Posts: 54
Bronze Member
 

@ease I have another silly question. Have you seen stories where magic happens by the 3rd part of the story? If I give the magic right from the beginning it will be a spoiler. So, I don't know if it's worth to send this story for the contest.

 
Posted : April 1, 2022 1:26 pm
(@wulfmoon)
Posts: 3211
Platinum Plus Moderator
 

@ease It was Volume 35, "The Damned Voyage" by John Haas. My WotF roommate, by the way. Great writer, great guy!

Click here to JOIN THE WULF PACK!
"Super-Duper Moongirl and the Amazing Moon Dawdler" won Best SFF Story of 2019! Read it in Writers of the Future, Vol. 35. Order HERE!
Need writing help? My award-winning SUPER SECRETS articles are FREE in DreamForge.
IT’S HERE! Many have been begged me to publish the Super Secrets of Writing. How to Write a Howling Good Story is now a #1 BESTSELLING BOOK! Get yours at your favorite retailer HERE!

 
Posted : April 1, 2022 4:16 pm
RETreasure
(@rschibler)
Posts: 959
Platinum Member
 
Posted by: @aidanka

I want to start writing for Q3 today. I just wonder if historical fantasy stories ever won? I can't remember any historical stories in the volumes that I've read in the past.

My published finalist for Vol 38 is historical fantasy Smile

V34: R,HM,R
V35: HM,R,R,HM
V36: R,HM,HM,SHM
V37: HM,SF,SHM,SHM
V38: (P)F, SHM, F, F
V39: SHM, SHM, HM, SHM
Published Finalist Volume 38
Pro’d out Q4V39
www.rebeccaetreasure.com

Managing Editor, Apex Magazine

 
Posted : April 1, 2022 4:26 pm
James (Ease)
(@ease)
Posts: 497
Gold Star Member
 
Posted by: @wulfmoon

@ease It was Volume 35, "The Damned Voyage" by John Haas. My WotF roommate, by the way. Great writer, great guy!

Oh, you're right! I thought I had read the two latest volumes, but it was the two penultimate volumes! Apologies for the misdirection.

VOL 40 2nd Quarter: Third Place ("Ashes to Ashes, Blood to Carbonfiber")
Past submissions: R - HM - HM - HM - HM - HM - SHM - SHM
www.jd-writes.com
Kindle Vella - Ashes to Ashes, Earth to Kaybee

 
Posted : April 1, 2022 7:55 pm
Wulf Moon reacted
James (Ease)
(@ease)
Posts: 497
Gold Star Member
 
Posted by: @aidanka

@ease I have another silly question. Have you seen stories where magic happens by the 3rd part of the story? If I give the magic right from the beginning it will be a spoiler. So, I don't know if it's worth to send this story for the contest.

The rule of thumb is that it should be in the first 450 words. That thumb can be hit by a hammer or caught by a circular saw, though. I would worry if the speculative element to the story isn't clear by the end of the fifth page. Foreshadowing well might be the answer. 

At the end of the day, a damned good story is going to win regardless, but if there's a chance your story is a smidgeon away from damned good, and it only takes a smidgeon, then give yourself every chance you can by heeding the many rules of thumbs.

VOL 40 2nd Quarter: Third Place ("Ashes to Ashes, Blood to Carbonfiber")
Past submissions: R - HM - HM - HM - HM - HM - SHM - SHM
www.jd-writes.com
Kindle Vella - Ashes to Ashes, Earth to Kaybee

 
Posted : April 1, 2022 7:59 pm
storysinger
(@storysinger)
Posts: 1533
Platinum Plus
 

Lately my stories have started with creatures that are only found in the world of magic, whoa so actually talking about it isn't needed. shrug

Just saying. 

Today's science fiction is tomorrow's reality-D.R.Sweeney
HM x5
Published Poetry
2012 Stars in Our Hearts
Silver Ships

 
Posted : April 2, 2022 9:41 am
(@wulfmoon)
Posts: 3211
Platinum Plus Moderator
 
Posted by: @ease

The rule of thumb is that it should be in the first 450 words

To help writers understand why genre cue up front is so important, I wrote Super Secret #12 on this. It’s on this page here

Cheers!

 

Click here to JOIN THE WULF PACK!
"Super-Duper Moongirl and the Amazing Moon Dawdler" won Best SFF Story of 2019! Read it in Writers of the Future, Vol. 35. Order HERE!
Need writing help? My award-winning SUPER SECRETS articles are FREE in DreamForge.
IT’S HERE! Many have been begged me to publish the Super Secrets of Writing. How to Write a Howling Good Story is now a #1 BESTSELLING BOOK! Get yours at your favorite retailer HERE!

 
Posted : April 2, 2022 10:21 am
JAbecker and storysinger reacted
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