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Posts Tagged ‘horror’

My short story is now available to read

November 6, 2014 14 comments

I was happy to be included in this year’s Halloween edition of the Siren’s Call eZine (click here to download the pdf), published by Siren’s Call Publications.

October Siren's Call eZine

Siren’s Call eZine

If you’re in the mood for some post-Halloween chills, or just want to read my story — The Patch Beyond the Hill — download the eZine and check it out. For any who do, please let me know what you think of the story.

–dp

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End of (unannounced) summer hiatus and short story news

October 10, 2014 13 comments

Summer is over now, which is fine by me. Though our pool made those 100+ degree days bearable, and sometimes even fun, I’m ready for cool weather and the holidays. It’s also time to jump back into blogging and catching up with everyone else’s blogs.

First up, some good news. I recently submitted a short story to a very cool eZine for their upcoming Halloween themed issue. I was thrilled when they accepted it and am looking forward to when it comes out later this month. When it does, I’ll let everyone know where they can find it should they be interested in reading the story.

Happy Halloween

Happy Halloween 🙂

–dp

On editing: red pen and printed copy

June 28, 2014 8 comments

Yep, that’s right. Once again, despite my lukewarm feelings about the first time I tried it, I’ve grabbed my trusty red pen and am ready to apply it (liberally) to a newly finished short story. It’s a tale about a young family’s car trip that takes them through an isolated stretch of highway running through the desert between their home in southern California and a family reunion in Phoenix, Arizona. Current working title: Road Trip

Red pen and hard copy of Road Trip - ready to edit

Red pen and hard copy of Road Trip – ready to edit

I hope to include it in my eventual collection of short dark fiction, Night Terrors. Time and editing will tell if the story is good enough to make it in. I’ll let everyone know how it goes.

Wish me luck.

–dp

ps – if you look closely, you’ll notice there’s already a coffee stain on the first page. Good start 🙂

On writing: submitting another short story

March 11, 2014 12 comments

I recently found out that Cemetery Dance Publications, one of my favorite publishers of dark fiction and horror, is accepting submissions for one remaining slot in their upcoming publication, October Dreams 2, an anthology of Halloween-themed short stories. So of course, I can’t resist … I must submit a story, despite the overwhelming odds against acceptance (I wrote about my first submission/rejection here). But I’m okay with that, because as one of my blog friends reminded me when my last story was rejected, I’m aiming for the top, and acceptance into publications of this caliber is hard. So if ever one of my stories is accepted then it will mean even that much more.

Don’t get me wrong, though … I’ll still be disappointed if/when the rejection comes, but at least this time I’ll remember that I’m in the company of hundreds of other talented writers who also were rejected. There is some comfort in that 🙂

So, off I go into my next big adventure. I’ll keep you all posted.

Wish me luck!

–dp

Why do you write?

November 20, 2013 23 comments

onwriting

Writing isn’t about making money, getting famous, getting dates, getting laid, or making friends. In the end, it’s about enriching the lives of those who will read your work, and enriching your own life, as well. It’s about getting up, getting well, and getting over. Getting happy, okay? Getting happy.
Stephen King

Can’t say it a whole lot better than that … Someday, when I publish my first book, I will be absolutely thrilled if even only one person reads it and likes it. If no one reads it, well, I’ll still be happy, just because I finished it. Still, wouldn’t mind getting that one like 🙂

Why do you write?

–dp

On writing: The inevitable rejection

July 16, 2013 28 comments

So, back in January, I accomplished one of my goals for 2013: I submitted a short story to Cemetery Dance magazine. With high hopes I’d pressed that submit button, sending off my short story of which I was so proud. And then I’d waited … and waited … and waited. After a while, I’d waited so long I didn’t really even feel like I was waiting for anything anymore. But to be fair, they did warn that due to the deluge of stories it would likely take several months before I’d hear back from them. Well, they were wrong. It took over five months! But, on the positive side, I did hear back.

While I’d like to tell you I received a personal note from the managing editor of the magazine/publisher, Brian Freeman — you know, something telling me all about how it was a wonderful story but they just couldn’t quite fit it into this quarter’s magazine but they’d sure like me to submit again — the truth of the matter is that I received a “form” rejection from some unknown underling in charge of reading through the slush pile (at least I assume it was the slush pile … who knows, maybe I made it further along). I suppose I can understand why it happened, though. With the sheer volume of material that’s submitted to some of these magazines, especially one of the caliber of Cemetery Dance, it’s nearly impossible to personalize rejections. Otherwise, nothing would ever get published. But still, it would have been nice …

To put a positive spin on things, though, you could say that I accomplished something else in 2013: I got my first rejection 🙂 At least that means I wrote something, and that I overcame inertia and fear and actually submitted it, knowing full well that in all probability it would get rejected. But I consider it a part of my growth as a writer. After all, if you can’t handle rejection, there’s no reason to be a writer, unless, of course, all you want to do is keep your stories to yourself, hidden somewhere on your computer. But that’s not me. I’d like at least one other person besides my lovely wife to read something I’ve written.

I’d like to thank all those who left encouraging comments on my original post. I appreciated each of them. One in particular, though, had some advice that I plan to follow. I’d like to thank Michael over at Parlor of Horror for taking the time to give me some good suggestions on what to do with my stories. So thanks, Michael 🙂

I’ll post the rejected story soon, then some of my other work. Eventually, I’ll even post some of my W(s)IP. I’d also like to find a writing buddy at some point, or an alpha reader, preferably someone serious about their writing and their interest in reading over works in progress. I’ve also heard about some folks having great success with online writer’s groups, so I’d like to pursue that as well. I’ve already got an account on scribophile.com; now all I need to do is become active within the community.

Should make the remainder of the year interesting, and hopefully productive.

–dp

Short story submitted: first writing goal of 2013 accomplished

January 9, 2013 24 comments

So, I did it. I just submitted one of my short stories to Cemetery Dance Magazine.

Of course, this was only after my wife read through it several times for me and made some wonderful suggestions. I then spent days going over and over it to make sure it was as good as it could possibly be. Finally, after mustering all the nerve I could, I uploaded it to their submission site and pressed “send”. Off it went, into the submission slush pile.

While I hope for the best, I realize that my chances of getting selected are pretty slim. According to them, they get around 500 submissions per month, so the odds aren’t all that good, even if I wrote something that managed to get their attention. But, even though they will most likely pass on it, I still feel good about what I wrote and figure everyone has to deal with their share of rejections. After all, the world of writing is tough, so if I can’t handle some negative responses then I might as well stop writing.

To keep me busy while waiting to hear back, among other things I plan to polish another short that I think is pretty good. Their guidelines say they want only one submission at a time, but that it’s okay to submit a new story if a previously submitted story is rejected, so I plan to keep on submitting until they stop accepting.

I’ll provide an update when I hear something. If I get rejected, I’ll lick my wounds and submit another. Then, I’ll post the first short story here for those who would like to read it.

Wish me luck!

–dp