By “pro markets” I mean publications who pay what is considered a “pro rate” for the right to publishing your work. For short stories, that rate ranges from 6¢ to 10¢ per word.
Many people are so intent on getting eyes on their writing that they are willing to work for free in exchange for ‘exposure’. Some are even willing to pay — a lot — to get published. I might have linked these before, but THIS ARTICLE and THIS ARTICLE are worth reading (warning — unlike the blandness one can find on this here blog, Chuck Wendig does not hold back with the colorful language bit).
Don’t get me wrong . . . I’m guilty of giving stuff away myself. I have published a lot of my fiction on this blog. My thinking went along the lines of “I’ll post it here, perhaps a few people will read it, and then, when I feel like it I will get it published”.
I was wrong on both counts . . . my fiction writing blog posts continue to be the least read of all my stuff . . . not a big deal, I suppose, since I now can’t get that stuff published anyway. That said, it’s on my own site. I’m not providing others with content just so I can gain exposure while they make money.
Back to pro markets . . . aside the money, one of the reasons for submitting to pro markets is that they make you eligible for membership in SFWA (Science Fiction & Fantasy Writers of America). They really should get an editor or two to join . . . their acronym is missing a letter.
Why join? Well, they give these reasons . . . few will click on the link, so let me paraphrase what they say: help promote your book, help resolve contractual disputes, help with unexpected medical expenses, talk shop with your peers, and offer a sense of community.
Hmm . . . there’s a reason I’m not a member of any organization; they tend to be cliquish. Not only that, they are not like me. What does that even mean? Well, I follow and read authors who are members and even authors who held leadership roles in the SF(F)WA. On the aggregate and speaking in gross generalities, we are alike . . . we don’t torture cats, we don’t murder indiscriminately, and while we may differ in our opinions of Unicorns, we can be grouped along with many other people in the “generally harmless” category.
It’s when one starts looking at particulars that one finds an underlining homogeneousness to which I do not conform. It could be politics, it could be the propensity to swear, what we like to read and write, how much we like drinking and hanging around in bars . . . it could be all those things and more.
But, OK, I don’t have to marry the other members. I can join and take from it, and give back to it, only what I want and what anyone accepts. HERE are the requirements. Note the part about recognized qualifying short fiction markets.
I’ve researched those qualifying markets . . . save for a few of them, I don’t write what is typically offered in those publications. I mean, I write SF, and occasionally the missing F, but the style of my writing differs significantly from what I read in those markets. Significantly enough that I struggle reading through some of the stuff.
I submitted the Future Graveyard story to the four I thought were the most likely to perhaps have an interest in the piece . . . and got swift rejections. Three were form rejection e-mails and one said they liked the concept and story but it’s not what they are currently looking for. What are they currently looking for? My stories match what they say, all say, they are looking for . . . and yet, not.
Honestly, as much as I liked the positive feedback, I’m now even more confused than I was before. Is the current writing environment following the way of art in general?
Are they looking not at the piece itself, but at a perceived demand I don’t know about? If so, why not spell it out? . . . it would make more sense if they had said they didn’t like it or picked one of my canned responses to impart a bit more information.
Really, being a writer is turning out almost more bother than I want. Say I do sell stuff and qualify for SF(F)WA . . . what can I contribute to the organization? Will I have to conform to expectations? Do I need to develop self-doubts, have bouts of depression, learn all about obscure hard liquor labels, and nod my head at whatever popular cause is making the social media rounds?
And, what if I opt not to join? Will I be shunned? Will I be branded with a non-SF(F)WA stamp?
I gave myself a year to go the traditional route. Some say it’s not enough time, but if I can’t even sell one story during a given year, I will have to reconsider the paths before me. I have another nine months to go but I might give me a bit longer because we’re selling our house and relocating, and that means two to four months of upheaval during which writing might/will take a back seat to life.
Cruisers Update XII – The Details Part III
Continuing with my late reporting of the June 14, 2015, Tri-Lakes Vintage Car show.
So, here we go, more macros (or micros).
By the way, there is a SmugMug Gallery (HERE) for this, past, and future posts about this show. Also, you can click on the photos to open a larger version of the photo in a separate tab or window. Go ahead; try it.
As much as I like the ultra-shiny bodies, I have a soft spot for stuff that looks its age. Perhaps because I now look more and more my age. It wasn’t that long ago that people would judge me much younger than my biological age . . . no longer . . . perhaps I need to start wearing my clown costumes again.
Take this next shot . . .
A few blemishes, but really, a better paint job than most cars on the road.
Not so this next set . . .
Its body might be worn, beat up, and showing its age, but the engine still runs, the wheels still turn. It has character, it do.
Plus, great for B&W conversions.
Does this remind you of anyone? Now I know where they got the idea for the minions.
Only, you know, they made them yellow.
I wish I would have given the badge a bit more room on this next photo.
Normally, red would turn to a dark gray when converting into B&W . . . unless you use the infrared filter.
I’m still thinking about converting either the D100 or D200 to an infrared camera. Probably the D200, but I hate the idea of messing with stuff I own.
This next badge has plenty of room. And that’s how the color red normally looks when converted to B&W.
Can you guess what car that’s on?
Here’s another one that might be easily guessed.
I think this next shot goes with the above, but I don’t know for sure. Likely, it belongs to a Chrysler Charger.
Most people can easily recognize this next badge.
If not, this helps . . .
Notice how some of those don’t have a deep depth of field . . . I know; I’m pissed off as well.
OK, we’ve had enough red . . .
There’s already a slight 3-D quality to that design, but I think converting it to B&W enhances the effect.
Here’s a tad of blue and a bit of purple.
Of this next pair, I think I’m partial to the B&W version. Some might not agree with my partiality.
Here’s a boring shot I took for reasons which now escape me.
And here are a couple of better shots bringing an end to this leg of the details journey.
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. . . my FP ward . . . chieken shit.