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2019-03-19 01:57 pm

What I've been up to lately, writing-wise:

 
I'm in the home stretch of the contemporary fantasy thriller that I've been working on for mumble-mumble-don't-ask-please. All the pieces are coming together, the writing is flowing easily because of all the momentum pushing it forward, and I'm really pleased with how it's turning out. Don't get too excited, though. Final stretch for me means another couple of months. I have hopes I'll finish it before the kids go on summer vacation. I must say that I do miss the faster feedback loop of short stories, though. The long slog of a novel is brutal when you don't know if anyone will ever read and love it. I'll probably write a whole batch of short stories once I finish this bigger project.

See market updates and all the rest at http://www.aswiebe.com/writing/archive2019.html#031919
I'm putting this bit here so I can keep the journal-ish parts archived.

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2019-02-17 03:19 pm

Monthly Writing Update!

What I've been up to lately, writing-wise:
I'm focusing on consistency--writing every day. I find that when I tell myself I only need to write three sentences, but I need to write those first (before doing whatever else it is I want or need to do on the computer), it is much easier for me to get past that initial resistance-to-writing and I usually write more than three sentences. So yay! I found something that works for me! YMMV and of course what works often changes, but if you're having trouble getting started, it's worth a try.
 
Things Shiny or Useful
Archive of all shiny or useful links: http://www.aswiebe.com/writing/shiny.html  
 
5 Places to Get Paid to Write About Writing: https://horrortree.com/5-places-to-get-paid-to-write-about-writing/

The Mysterious Discipline of Narratologists: https://www.tor.com/2019/01/29/the-mysterious-discipline-of-narratologists/

Emergency Triage for Writers: Bring Out Your Dead: http://dankoboldt.com/emergency-triage-writers/

The rest of the market list update: Ambiguous Horror Needed (Or Is It?) and Other Publication Updates



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2019-01-30 02:41 pm

Writing Thoughts in Passing


It's still only January, but so much has kicked into gear for this year already! Some I can announce, some I can't yet.
 
Several people have subscribed recently, and it is the beginning of the year, so I thought I'd give you a refresher on where else you can find me. I have not one, not two, but three email newsletters!
  • Aswiebe's Market List - This one! A monthly update on new publications accepting science fiction, fantasy, and horror, along with a few of my favorite writing links.
  • My teaching newsletter - Get notifications when I'm teaching classes or running free workshops in the Twin Cities area.
  • Abra's Quarterly Compendium of Delight - A quarterly(ish) author newsletter with news of my publications, recommended free fiction, exclusives, and assorted other fun things. Subscribers also get quick updates when I have something new out.
 
Other places you can find me!
 
My author website is at http://www.aswiebe.com/. If you go there and click on "Stories," you will find links to read many of my published works. Some are free! I'm in the middle of building a new website that looks like it was made in the last decade, so pardon the plaster dust and redirects.
 
What I've been up to lately, writing-wise:
I've been working on a grant application for an artist residency. As an SF writer, this is a tricky needle to thread, but it has jumpstarted the process of me creating an author website that looks like it was made in the past decade. Part of the application requires an online portfolio, so that is up and will exist for the next month or so. Three of my favorite stories are up there, free to read for a limited time, so go take a look!
 
header semi-final.jpg
 
(This webpage will probably redirect you--the domain is in the middle of being transferred. And pardon the plaster dust and thumping sounds as I renovate my website.)
 
Road of Dreams - Transcendent150w.jpg
My short story, "Road of Dreams," is now out in the Transcendent anthology, a large compilation of stories inspired by dreams, nightmares, and hallucinations. Don't read before bedtime. ;)

Read the full newsletter here: http://www.aswiebe.com/writing/markets.html
 
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2018-12-24 02:56 pm

The monthly writing post

Thoughts in Passing
Happy Holidays! I hope you are having a joyful Christmas Eve, if you celebrate it. Me, I like Iceland's idea of  Jólabókaflóð, the Yule Book Flood. In addition to our usual Christmas Eve festivities, I absolutely plan on settling in with some chocolate and a book this evening after the children are asleep.

If you are reading this after the holidays, perhaps because you've chosen to unplug for a while, go you! I hope you feel relaxed and refreshed.
 
And don't forget that ebooks are a great way to spend the last few dollars of that gift card you got, and novellas are particularly affordable. Here are the Nebula award nominees for novella this year and here's my small yet epic fantasy.
 

What I've been up to lately, writing-wise:
 
I am embracing the idea of a writing session being a success even if you only write 3 sentences. It's removed a lot of the pressure, and so I feel less of an urge to procrastinate and end up writing more. Usually for me, it isn't the writing that's a problem, it's the starting to write. This helps, and I'm happy with how it's encouraging me to keep my mind in my project and to write every day. Because after all, I can do those ten urgent other things after I've written my 3 sentences, and if I feel like writing more once I get started (I usually do), then those ten other urgent things can wait a little longer.

Things Shiny or Useful
Archive of all shiny or useful links: http://www.aswiebe.com/writing/shiny.html  

Basic client negotiation strategies: https://twitter.com/imemi/status/1065700145948434432
 
 
Ultimate list of the best book review blogs: https://kindlepreneur.com/book-review-blogs/#sci-fi
 
 
 
Featured Market
 
New pro themed anthology! Five Minutes at Hotel Stormcove wants all genres, pays $.06/wd.
 
 
  • Stories must meet two basic criteria. First, they must take place over the span of five minutes. Second, they must take place at a specific era, location, and time of day within the rooms or grounds of the Hotel Stormcove.
 
  • In order to maximize ease of writing across genres, we are not adhering to a strict Earth location and timeline. Contemporary writers will find the current hotel equipped with modern amenities. Historical fiction writers would be best writing generic stories in an era, but not based on specific local events. Fantasy writers may find low or urban fantasy easier with this theme, but I don’t doubt your ability to work in high fantasy elements and hope you will enjoy the challenge. And steampunk writers, well you can stage a whole mechanical speakeasy in the cocktail lounge. Mystery has the gift of finding a dead body in the hotel room, but you know, have fun with it. And so on.

Basics: all genres--themed, under 4,000 words, no reprints, pays $.06/wd, due 1/31/2019. Guidelines: https://www.atthisarts.com/stormcove/.
 
(This month's full markets newsletter can be found here: http://www.aswiebe.com/writing/archive2018.html#122418)
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2018-11-21 11:20 am

Writing Thoughts In Passing

Thoughts in Passing
As we approach the holidays, the publishing industry slooooooooowwwws way down. Many magazines close for the month of December. Very few new magazines choose to start up during this time (January is a different story). So if you have something you want to send out on submission, get it out now, before Thanksgiving happens in the United States. Skip sending out submissions in December, as many publications will be on hiatus anyway. Take a break, write new things, and spend time with family and friends!

What I've been up to lately, writing-wise:
 
This month, I performed at a couple of big reading events. It went well! One was for a new release that I have a couple of stories in, The Subverted Fairy Project, a collaboration between artists and writers. If you enjoy twisted fairy tales, art, or flash fiction, I recommend it!
 
Subverted Fairy Project - cover.jpg
 
Tor.com also posted a wonderful and completely unexpected review of The Unkindness of Ravens, my epic fantasy novella. Squee!

(This is the personal-ish tidbit from my writing markets newsletter. The whole thing, with all the details about new markets, can be found here: http://www.aswiebe.com/writing/markets.html)
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2018-10-25 08:06 pm

What I've been up to lately, writing-wise


This past week the kids had off from school, so our family headed to a cabin in the wilds of Wisconsin. No internet, no cellphone signal ... perfect. I didn't even burden myself with, "I should be writing a lot." It was the perfect way to get out of my own head and unwind. I enjoyed the autumn splendor, went for long walks in the woods, and read two books. Now I'm back and feeling less stressed and more connected, in a good way!

What I've been up to lately, writing-wise:
 
I have a short story in the next issue of F&SF, available at fine bookstores on November 1st. My inner 13-year-old is SO happy right now!
[Contributor's copies]
 
And I've been preparing for readings at a couple of big events coming up.
 
Next Sunday I'll be performing at WordBrew, an annual showcase for Minnesotan F/SF writers. It's always a great time. Check it out if you're in town!
 
November 17th will be the grand book release party and fairy-themed extravaganza for The Subverted Fairy Project, an art and writing collaboration that I am part of. It's going to be amazing. Mark your calendar now!
https://www.facebook.com/events/485033022007029/

(This is an excerpt from the Aswiebe's Market List newsletter. The full newsletter can be read here: http://www.aswiebe.com/writing/markets.html)
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2018-09-24 07:42 pm

Adjusting to Summer, Wolf House Reading

Welcome to new pro-paying SF/Fantasy market, Constellary! All the details and more SF writing updates: http://www.aswiebe.com/writing/markets.html

(Personal bits from the newsletter below, because that's what this blog platform is for, I guess? I wish?)

Thoughts in Passing
Summer is a hectic, not-so-productive time for me. Happy Autumn, everyone! And a blessed Autumn Equinox to those who celebrate it.

My autumn goals are always threefold: ease back into being more productive now that I have school mornings to myself; de-stress myself; and frantically try to catch up with everything that I fell behind on during the summer. This includes cleaning and meal-planning and paperwork, as well as my Very Long Indeed list of writing-related to-dos. That's not actual writing, mind you, just the many obligations and projects and bookkeeping related to being a writer!

Then my oldest got sick with pneumonia. He's doing a lot better now, thank goodness, but all my fine plans (and alone time!) went by the wayside for the last week and a half. Time to take a deep breath and remind myself that fifteen minutes at a time still makes a difference. It's time to focus on writing.

What I've been up to lately, writing-wise:
 
I had a great reading at The Wolf House (my pictures of this weird, wonderful, bizarre space are here and here) as part of the Subverted Fairy Project. It was recorded, so you should be able to listen to that soon. And there will be more news about this project as the launch date gets closer. If you're local to the Twin Cities, mark November 17th on your calendar for an awesome launch party!
 
To get back into the swing of writing more, I've found Cold Turkey Writer incredibly useful. It takes over your whole computer and doesn't let you do anything else until you've written the amount of words or for the amount of minutes that you specify. Great for avoiding distractions!


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2018-08-15 10:32 pm

New Markets Update! The End of Our World



The next update of Aswiebe's Market List will be after 9/15/2018.
Permanent link to this newsletter in the archives: http://www.aswiebe.com/writing/archive2018.html#081518

Thoughts in Passing
Oops! I've had so much on my plate lately that I completely blanked on the last Aswiebe's Market List update, so this is a double shot.

What I've been up to lately, writing-wise:
 
My little epic fantasy novella is out in the world! The Unkindness of Ravens is an epic fantasy story about trickster gods and favors owed. Initial reviews on Goodreads are very positive. Yay! Go read the long excerpt on my website.
 
Things Shiny or Useful
Archive of all shiny or useful links: http://www.aswiebe.com/writing/shiny.html  

Plot Structure: How to Shape an Intriguing Plot: https://www.nownovel.com/blog/novel-plot-structure-intrigue/

25 Ways to Plot, Plan, and Prep Your Story: http://terribleminds.com/ramble/2011/09/14/25-ways-to-plot-plan-and-prep-your-story/


Featured Market
 
The End of Our World anthology is seeking thoughtful SF themed to climate catastrophe and end of the world. Due 8/31/2018!
 
Contemporary warnings of impending doom, the rapidly approaching end of our overdeveloped and unsustainable world, are based on reality and science, on cold, hard facts, matters of projection rather than prediction. And we are already seeing the end beginning. The signs are everywhere: environmentally and socially (check our fact sheet for details). We are going down, and most of us know, perhaps not consciously, not clearly spelled out, but we know, deep inside, that we are going down, in spite of all the comforting lies told by those who are profiting from our downfall and want us to go meekly.

This contest is meant to raise people's awareness of what is happening to our (natural) world right now and what this may mean for the near future. We are looking for short stories dealing with the many existential issues facing us. No nonsense, no wild, impossible fantasies but strong, intelligent stories, based on facts, cautionary tales, speculative, plausible and thought-provoking.
 
Basics: themed science fiction, 1,500-3,000 words, reprints okay, $1,000 prize. Due 8/31/2018. Guidelines: http://www.aftermathmag.org/contest.html.
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2018-06-22 02:53 pm

New Market List Update! Sins and Other Worlds


Thoughts in Passing
I am deep in the pre-production for my epic fantasy novella, The Unkindness of Ravens. During my final grammar-and-typos copyedit, my proudest moment was spotting the extra space hiding at the beginning of a paragraph. 😆 Want to know what gave me the most trouble? Figuring out the grammatically correct use of articles with a term I made up myself (turns out it's complicated).

Ah, writers. We do it to ourselves.
 
What I've been up to lately, writing-wise:
 
See above. I have a novella coming out soon! July 17th! Soon, The Unkindness of Ravens will be available in print for pre-order. The ebook is already available for pre-order on non-Amazon sites, with a special low pre-order price (Kindle coming soon).

I'm also going to two local writing conventions in the next month. I'm at 4th Street Fantasy, June 22 - June 24th (I'm there now!). And I'm at CONvergence July 5 - July 8. I'll be doing a reading (with donuts if they're allowed in the room) first thing in the morning on Friday! That same day I'll be on these panels: Kids Ask a Writer, Keeping Creatively Energized, and Next Big Monster. On Saturday, I'm part of the group book signing (look for my origami tree) and the Writing Violence in Violent Times panel.
 
Things Shiny or Useful
Archive of all shiny or useful links: http://www.aswiebe.com/writing/shiny.html  

A Mid-Year Prep Talk to Rejuvenate Your Writing Resolutions: http://www.ingramspark.com/blog/a-mid-year-pep-talk-to-rejuvenate-your-writing-resolutions

Featured Market
 
Sins and Other Worlds is a reprint dark SF anthology by Shacklebound Books.
 
All submissions must be science fiction in nature. Any sub-genre is acceptable, but the stories must have have a science fiction element and must be dark in tone or atmosphere.
 
Basics: dark science fiction, reprints ONLY, 1,500 words or fewer, pays at least $.01/word (maybe more depending on Kickstarter). Due until filled. Guidelines: https://shackleboundbooks.wordpress.com/submissions/.
 
For the rest of the market updates, go to http://www.aswiebe.com/writing/markets.html
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2018-05-18 09:53 am

New Market List Update!

New Aswiebe's Market List update!

I talk about feeling stressed and miserable and realizing that a lot of the reason why is that ... I haven't been writing.

Also, the Punk Rock Future anthology wants punk rock science fiction, fantasy, and horror, pays pro rates. All the details and more: http://www.aswiebe.com/writing/markets.html

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2018-04-17 08:12 pm

New Market List Update!

FearBot3000 wants you to know that the The Working Zealot's Guide to Gaining Capital in Pre-Apocalyptic America will pay you monies for your weird capitalist stories.

All the new market list updates:
http://www.aswiebe.com/writing/markets.html

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2018-03-17 12:58 pm

New Market List Update!

New Aswiebe's Market List update! Unidentified Funny Objects 7 will pay you $.10/word for your funny SFF. But wait, there's more!

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2018-02-18 11:42 am

All the updates fit to be printed in!

New market list update! Learn all about the ultimate ham sandwich anthology, plus more: http://www.aswiebe.com/writing/markets.html
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2018-01-18 05:45 pm

Pie Charts of the Dead!

It's 2018! Which SF/F publications didn't make it? The new update of Aswiebe's Market List has it all. Lists! Tables! Pie charts! (No, really, I have pie charts.)

Pie Chart of Surviving Publications
 

See?


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2017-12-17 11:31 am

New Market List Update!

Tax changes for writers, book giveaways, a contest for teen writers, and more new writing market updates!

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2017-11-17 10:48 am

New Market List Update!

New Markets Update Nov 2017: If This Goes On political SF anthology & more!

http://www.aswiebe.com/writing/markets.html
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2017-10-21 01:01 pm

New Writing Markets Update October 2017: Book Smugglers

Book Smugglers is open for awakenings-themed submissions!

All the details and more new market updates: http://www.aswiebe.com/writing/markets.html
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2017-09-15 11:38 am

Market List Update

New market list update is out!

In which there's a super-awesome short fiction contest about the idea of a basic income (and the prize is one!), and I ponder how writing time disappears.

http://www.aswiebe.com/writing/archive2017.html#091517
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2017-08-16 04:14 pm

Revising thoughts, new story out, and whatnot

Thoughts in Passing

I'm in the middle of a massive hack-and-slash on a finished novella project, cutting 29,200 words down to 25,000 so that I can submit it a shorter version to a particular place. That means I need to cut enough words that they would make a good-sized short story all by themselves. I'm about a quarter done. I approach this project in the spirit of taking out everything that I possibly can, from adjectives to not-entirely-critical character interactions to whole scenes that can be summarized or omitted.

That is not how I normally approach editing. I don't believe that cutting down to the bone is best for every story. You can lose a lot of your personal voice and style that way. (I still cut my fair share of weasel words and plot going nowhere and bits that only exist to get from Point A to Point B, I assure you!)

I've also cut a couple hundred words from my "finished" long version. Maybe 1/10th of the time, the shorter version is stronger, not just different. I don't recommend gutting your story simply to see what works better that way, but it's a good exercise to try once. Save the original version first!

What I've been up to lately, writing-wise:

I held back on announcing this, because reasons, but I have a new publication to announce! My short story, "Miracle Material," appears in Mother's Revenge: A Dark and Bizarre Anthology of Global Proportions.

In this mixed genre group of eco-tales, thirty-two authors from around the globe offer up some lessons in why it's wise to be kind to Mother Earth. Read and take heed. Your very life may depend on it!


 
And if you're in Minneapolis, next Sunday I'm leading a free workshop on PoV (Point of View). Come and say hi!


Meetup event: https://www.meetup.com/MinnSpec/events/239675908/

(Read the rest of this Aswiebe's Market List update here: http://www.aswiebe.com/writing/archive2017.html#081617)
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2017-06-16 08:06 pm

Update! Intelligence in Fiction Wants Thoughtfully Written AI Stories.

Thoughts in Passing

As a panelist at conventions, I am fortunate enough to be put in a position where I need to intensively study a certain story-related question. It changes my reading list. It changes the way that I read my reading list. It changes the way I read things that are not on my reading list. Maybe you're not on any panels. Maybe you don't go to conventions. You can still benefit from a narrow focus on the topic. Find a nearby convention, choose a panel that you're interested in, and plan as if you're going to be talking on that panel: questions, observations, and reading lists. You may be surprised by how much you gain from this.

What I've been up to lately, writing-wise:

I recently wrapped up a short writing project. I've gone back to working on my novel(s), except the next 6 weeks are full of conventions, related convention panel prep, and teaching classes. Classes! I am teaching classes! If you are interested in these, register. If someone you know in the Twin Cities area would be interested, please pass this information along. Register now!


Read more: