I had a fantastic year writing and realized a number of important things. I aimed at writing longer fiction for the first time. I also attended a number of conventions and paid attention more to the business of writing and publishing. I might describe it, in reflection, as a year of transition between being a writer and an author. (And here’s my Year in Writing:2021 from last year.)
I only made about 20 formal submissions for short fiction this year and received three acceptances. An odd little genre-defying story, Something Else to Do was accepted for the anthology Modern Magic by Knight Writing Press. The story Imaginary Friends was published in the anthology The Future’s So Bright. And The Right Motivation appeared in Corporate Catharsis: The work from home edition. But that’s not all I published.
I published several more works with Water Dragon Publishing. I was invited to submit a story for the Truck Stop at the Center of the Galaxy and wrote Better Angels, which appeared in August followed by The Better Angels and the Very Scary Halloween, The Better Angels and the Very Rapid Rescue, and a piece of flash fiction, Who’s Afraid of Whom.
Most importantly, I prevailed upon Water Dragon Publishing to serialize Revin’s Heart that picks up the story after the Third Time’s the Charm. In March, For the Favor of a Lady was released; in June, Storm Clouds Gather; in August, Crossing the Streams; and in December, The End of his Rope. The last two novelettes will appear in March and June 2023.
In total, I wrote about 140,000 words in 2022. Not mentioned above, I wrote several side stories intended for the Revin’s Heart fix-up: Where There’s a Will (the story of how Will and Grip meet and fall in love), Curtains Rise (the back story of how Will met the Baron (Grip’s father)), and Riva’s Escape, the origin story of how Revin transitioned. I also wrote a novel (barely): A Familiar Problem, for which I also wrote a side-story (A Different Midsummer Night’s Dream). I’m just finishing a novelette/novela with the origin of neoboxers for the Truck Stop series. And finally, I’ve started a new novel project, The Ground Never Lies, for which I’ve written a pilot.
Writing the side stories got me to realize that I love writing fan fiction — I just love writing it about my own writing. But every one I’ve written has given me deeper insight into the characters and world building.
I attended a bunch of conventions. Due to the pandemic, most were virtual appearances: Arisia, Boskone, Flights of Foundry, Lambda Literary Awards, Balticon, and OutWrite. I did, however, travel to and participate in Chicon in meatspace (and virtually) where I moderated three panels, served on two others, and performed a reading; in addition to helping run a table for the Small Publishing in a Big Universe Podcast Marketplace. I also helped run a dealer table at the Rhode Island Comic Con.
In August, I was interviewed by the Small Publishing in a Big Universe podcast (the interview aired in December) and, in October, I was a “guest interviewer” which gave me the chance to interview Francesca Forrest, which was a lot of fun. I don’t personally have the patience to listen to podcasts very often. But being interviewed and interviewing other people is fun, so maybe I should do it more often.
I joined two writing organizations in 2022. The Straw Dog Writer’s Guild is a regional writer support network. I’ve participated in workshops, readings and have joined the Program Committee to help coordinate events. The Science Fiction Writers Association (SFWA) is a professional association for writers of science fiction and fantasy. I was unable to attend their annual meeting, the Nebulas, because it conflicted with my union’s annual meeting. Hopefully this year, that won’t be an issue. But I participate in their weekly Writing Date events (and even hosted one!) and use their Discord server to interact with other authors.
Finally, I read slush for the first time. It was unbelievably helpful to see less polished writing than what gets published. I was like, “Oh! So this is what they mean when they say, ‘Show, don’t tell’!” This may have been as helpful as anything else I’ve done all year to help improve my writing. Although just getting editorial feedback on my writing continues to be helpful. And I’ve noticed that my most recent writing requires less editing than my older writing, which encourages me to think that my writing is improving.
Overall, It was a great year in writing and I look forward to another great year to come!