Entry for a Janet Reid Flash Fiction Contest, CampNaNoWriMo Winner, Celebrating IWSG Day, ROW80

CampNaNoWriMo was a success!

I was about to add "relatively speaking" but I just realised that today is Insecure Writer's Support Group Day! In honour of the occasion, I refuse to feel guilty over all the editing I am not doing, and instead focus on all the ROW80 goals I've accomplished this summer, some set in advance and some unexpected but exciting. Since June, with regard to writing and transcription goals, I have:

Beta read two novels (not counting additional synopsis or query letter or scene-related assistance)
Written a short story (One to Another)
Provided my contributions to a joint novel I'm writing (s l o w l y) with family members (The Horror of Horhor)
Typed up over 10,000 words on Larksong (my 2014 NaNo novel), with only 10,000 left to go
Provided brief copy edits on a self-published novel
Submitted two requested reviews and reviewed a handful of other books read
Finished typing up another batch of Wallace correspondence transcripts (with only the formatting left to do)
Jotted brief notes for a brand new novel inspired by the life of Henry Blythe King Allpass 
Written the first third of an entirely new novel for CampNaNoWriMo! (The Heathen in the Hold)

I hadn't realised that the goals for CampNaNo weren't flexible, in the way our ROW80 goals are. I had originally intended to write 20,000 words on a new story, but only managed 15,000. I declared myself a winner, though, since I made up the other 5,000 with the short story and the contributions to the family novel. I wouldn't have been so lax with myself if there wasn't a baby in the house, of course!

I also wrote one other piece, which was a reworking of a vignette I wrote more than a year ago. There's an image by Dave McKean at the end of one of the collected Sandman (Neil Gaiman) editions, of a dark New York City-type building. As soon as I saw it, I was inspired. I'd originally intended the vignette for Vine Leaves, but wasn't accepted.

Then, a couple of weeks ago I caught a Janet Reid flash fiction contest marking the publication of Go Set A Watchman (which I haven't read yet. I'm just saddened by all the "regular" readers (i.e. those not involved in the publishing industry in any way or frequenting writing-related blogs or what have you) who are buying it because they think it's a sequel. Saddest instance was a colleague who told me he was interested in this new release, but admitted he hadn't read To Kill A Mockingbird).

The main rules were 1. Write a story using 100 words or fewer and 2. Use these words in the story: watch, man, total, flim, flam

I took my vignette, had fun tightening and reshaping it, and then realised that at the moment when I saw her tweet about the contest, the deadline had already come and gone! Instead, I'll share it here:

Riding home, slumped against the cab window -- had two girly drinks (flimsy flamingo straws included) and am playing at melancholy without being totally drunk -- I notice a pine strung with Christmas lights.

An office window's fluorescent white mutes the holiday warmth.

Tonight he said he's moving, "but we'll keep in touch."

The cabman -- watching in the rearview -- asks, "You okay?"

I say no, and he slams the brakes.

Christmas lights and fluorescent glare shine off snow where I stumble out, but even if I'm drunker than I thought, they can't blind me from the truth:

I'll never see him again.

The original (with a more hopeful ending), is under my Shared Writing Snips tab, if you'd like to compare.

Next task is to finish editing One to Another for submission to the Surrey International Writers' Conference contest. I've gotten some great feedback from betas, but am up against my bugbear: needs more conflict. I always struggle with raising the stakes. Oh wait, it's Insecure Writer's Support Group Day...

What are you congratulating yourself for today?

Have you entered any of Janet Reid's flash fiction contests?

Popular posts from this blog

Contest to Celebrate My 900th Post!

New Goals for ROW80, and Open for Guest Posts!

Books, etc.