Sunday, 28 December 2008

A difficult year for GBW & Co Ltd.

In the year 2007-2008 production was down by 30% and sales were down by 50%. The Board (that'd be me and the dog) has decided therefore, that unless the company is to go the way of so many other companies this needs to be addressed and addressed immediately.
The Chairman (the dog) has asked that I (the only person in the company that can type) "do something about it." (Please note the non specific nature of the Chairman's instruction so that if it doesn't happen he can deny all blame.)
The Chairman also asked if I had a theory on why the company had endured such a bad year and I told him that I felt that the reasons were threefold.
1. I didn't submit as much as I should have or hoped that I would.
2. What I did sub wasn't good enough.
3. I didn't write enough
Okay so that's the self pity over for another year and this is what really happened.
1. There were huge parts of 2008 when writing wasn't my number one priority. Okay, so as a year it wasn't as bad as the one before but it certainly had it's moments. So sometimes, writing and subbing were the last things on my mind.
2. I subbed some things to the wrong market at the wrong time or before they were ready.
3. Can't argue with number three - it's true.
After listening to my argument the Chairman nodded like the wise old sage that he is before knocking me to the floor and licking me ferociously for five minutes. That concluded the Board Meeting and we went for a walk to devise a plan to have a better year next year. Said plan will go before the Board at a later date.

Tuesday, 23 December 2008

Ho ho ho and all that

So it's that time of the year again and I don't suppose that there'll be much blogging going on in the next few days so I would just like to take this opportunity to say Merry Christmas to you all. I hope that it is everything that you hope it will be.
I'll be spending mine with my menfolk all four of them which makes me very lucky and I am so looking forward to it.
Have a good one everyone but spare a thought for those out there that are having a hard time making their Christmas happen for them.

Coming out of the closet

I'm still largely in the closet as far as my writing is concerned. Himself knows that I do it and my good friend Tuesday Moon knows too but that's it. I don't even think that my kids know they probably just think that I mess about on a laptop a lot. Anyway, you may recall I told you recently that I had sold a story to The Weekly News and what should my mother-in-law be reading last week but The Weekly News. So if she reads the edition with my story in and she reads the authors names she is bound to ask. I guess the cat will be out of the bag then.

Monday, 22 December 2008

A reward in mind

A firend of mine told me that to help you to be successful you should record what you want to have achieved in a years time and then work out what you need to do in the next month to help you to achieve that. Also you need to note a reward that you will give yourself if you do what you said you would do in that month. I'm going to give it a go. I'm not sure what my to do list for January will be but my reward will be half an hour in Cafe Nero with a good book and a hot chocolate.

Here is Georgiana


Thanks to Annie who gave me this writing cave dragon to take care of. I have called her Georgiana and discovered that she likes to sleep late and spend the afternoons playing with my dog. The two of them have become great friends.
Thanks Annie

Sunday, 14 December 2008

Same old problem.

Do you remember a few weeks (might have been a bit longer than that) I was talking about editing my novel and how I couldn't stop myself tinkering with it? Well I'm still in that dilemma. I'm currently working on chapter 10 or at least I was a couple of minutes ago and I started to think about what Cally said. She told me that she stopped fiddling with her book (currently accepted and due for publication) when she bacame sick of looking at it. At that stage I was heartily sick of looking at the first three chapters that I had been tweaking for a while. So i left them and got on with the rest of the book and am currently as I say on chapter 10. So I'm asking myself should I go back and maybe work on say chapters 4 - 6 until I am sick of them or should I just plough on to the end?
Okay, so I'm thinking that I'll plough on for now. I'm thinking that I should work my way through the entire book because it's been a while since it was finished and I'm interested to read on and see how I developed the idea. (This book was finished before the bad stuff that happened last year so was stuck in a metaphoric drawer for a long time.)
Yes that's what I'll do...decision made...maybe.
Thanks for listening. I knew that you'd help me see sense.

Thursday, 11 December 2008

Risking the hex

Do you remember a few weeks ago when I told you that I'd read about a freelance author who never submitted in December? Their theory was that editors didn't commission as much and they lost submissions etc. Well I thought to myself "What the hec! I'll take the risk" (brave soul that I am) and I have submitted. Yes that is correct I have risked the December hex and sent out a story.
I wanted to go back and read the article again so that I could clarify a few things but I can't find it and I can't remember who the author was so I can't look them up. Thinking about it they may well have been just referred to as "a freelance writer". Anyway couldn't find it - what a shocker!
Then I thought that maybe the whole December thing had just been said for effect because as a freelancer their income is not guaranteed so they must make loads in the other 11 months.
I wanted to submit so I did and I wanted to tell you so I have.
Now I'm off to make fish pie (insight into my domesticity.)

Tuesday, 9 December 2008

Oh no not another one.

Following the rejection emails I received in the past two days you can imagine what I thought when I saw a message from an editor sitting in my inbox this afternoon. But, I thought bravely, best open it and get it over with. At least it was from Jill Finlay and she writes the best rejection emails I have ever had. She trys to find something positive and always lets you down gently so it wouldn't be so bad.
I while I still maintain that Jill writes great rejection emails, she writes even better acceptance ones.
Yes, you've understood me correctly. I've sold a story. It seems like ages since I was able to say that (I'd need to check my WW file to give you the exact length of time but it's been too long.)
I could barely keep the smile off my face all afternoon. And there's nothing like a bit of success for spurring you on.
Thanks Jill.

Monday, 8 December 2008

Would you credit it?

Can you believe it? I don't hear a dickie bird from anyone about anything for months on end and then following yesterday's rejection email I get another one today. Ya boo hiss and all that but never mind it'll soon be Christmas.

Sunday, 7 December 2008

A small thing

My latest rejection meant that I had to visit my "What's Where" file where I discovered that I only have 12 bits of writing currently with editors.
Of them there's one non fiction that I think I can forget about. It's with a magazine that is notoriously long at getting back to you and they have had it just over a year. I'd forgotten about it anyway so maybe I shouldn't count that. I only noticed it because I scrolled too far.
Then there's the story that has been with someone for 8 months. They asked that I give them 6 months so I have queried that one this morning.
There's one that People's Friend have had since May, another with Best since August and one with The Weekly News since later in August.
That leaves two with the magazine that rejected a story I sent them in November. They have had the two that they still have since October. I also have one fiction and one non fiction with editors I have never worked with before and they have had these particular works of genius (I am laughing you realise) since November.
There are also a couple of stories with a foreign editor who I have been warned never gets back to you sometimes not even when they want your story. I didn't know that when I submitted and I won't submit to them again so maybe I should just forget about those and out them down to experience.
So that, in a nutshell is my WW file. It is small but it is mine and just like my bank balance I will try and improve it in the coming months.