Well, it’s good to know that all those bribes are finally paying off …
But, really, I think it has more to do with getting a better handle on the markets I’m sending to than anything else. Although actually becoming a better writer through, you know, writing, has certainly helped as I go along.
Still, I’ve spent a fair amount of time learning everything I can about the fiction markets in the top two payment tiers (pro and semi-pro) using a number of methods (submissions probing, second-hand data, studying submissions reports, conversing with people involved in said publications whenever possible, etc.), and knowing what a market actually wants really does seem to matter a great deal.
As you would expect.
But it goes a little deeper than the basics of being able to read a set of guidelines. It comes down to understanding not only what a market claims they want, but what they actually publish on a regular basis, how far they’re willing to diverge from that, and, ultimately, about learning to properly self-assess your own work. And, though things do seem to be working out rather well for me on that particular front, I’ve also been able to suggest likely target markets to friends – suggestions which are resulting in sales. So, clearly, I’ve got some idea of what I’m talking about at this point. I’m actually putting this information to further use not too far down the road, but I’ll talk more about that when things come together.
In any case, the actual point of this post – when I started, anyway – was to highlight the fact that Mike Davis has opted to pick up a story of mine called “Beneath the Burning Sands of the Taklamakan” for the Lovecraft eZine. I enjoy working with Mike immensely, not least of all because the Lovecraft eZine publishes some exceptionally good authors – last time Mike picked up one of my pieces I shared a ToC for the issue with Joe Pulver and Brett Talley, among others – and it always amazes me that I get to spend time in the company of such exceptional authors.
In any case, I don’t yet have a date for that story’s release, but you can bet I’ll be posting about it once I do.