bouncing into the New Year

For last year’s words belong to last year’s language
And next year’s words await another voice.
—T S Eliot, “Little Gidding”

Wile E CoyoteWelcome to the voice of 2009!

Last year was a good one for short story/poetry sales, and that came from a concerted and consistent effort to submit my work to markets.

I pretty much doubled the number of submissions I sent out last year. Which means that I must match, and if possible raise again, the number of works in circulation in 2009.

Of course, the rejections still out-weight the sales. My reaction can range from a shrug of the shoulders to a deep depression. I had a number of particularly cruel disappointments this year. The last one was two days before Christmas.

Rejections don’t care about holidays, anniversaries, or birthdays. They fall, like anvils, when they wish.

I was flattened, like Wile E. Coyote, for a time. Yet, the roadrunners were too tasty to forgo, so I peeled myself off the canyon floor, found a bicycle pump, and re-inflated myself to normal.

On the other hand, a new market emerged recently called Thaumatrope, which is a webzine devoted to Twitterfic (stories under 140 characters that are posted on Twitter). It pays pro rates, notwithstanding the micro size of the tales. I sold six teeny stories to them in December. It was a fun challenge to produce something evocative and yet comprehensible in less than 140 characters.

I plan to push myself harder this year. The more you do the more you know you can do. I’ll just have to learn to sidestep the anvils, or draw the ground as a bouncy castle, so I can rebound faster and jump higher.