These might be some of the best stories I’ve ever written – even if I do say so myself.
Malcom Gladwell has a theory – it takes 10,000 hours to perfect one’s craft. Well, I think, perhaps I’ve hit 50,000, maybe 100,000.
Beyond that – one learns, one grows wiser with age; hopefully, that is what you’ll read in these stories. Wisdom. Empathy. Healing.
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A number of literary journals have given up, so to speak; in other words, gone out of business. They are either publishing online only or not publishing at all. I’ve received a number of emails or notifications from literary journals and, in some cases, well known or otherwise recognized and considered successful literary journals like Tin House that they will no longer publish.
The main reason is the cost or publication vs sales. Many literary journals operate in the red, a few may break even. I don’t think any of them are rolling in the dough.
Even the writers they publish accept their free copies and don’t purchase other copies. I understand; how many subscriptions can one writer – being paid in free copies – have?
This leaves us writers with fewer places to submit.
There are a number of online journals looking for work, and more forming every day. Although some of them are quality, I personally want more information than just a description of a new and upcoming online journal accepting submissions.
Duotrope and Poets and Writers offer more information on many of them – that’s a good resource.
I, however, think I’ll donate my time to finishing novels and fewer short stories. The shorter fiction may or may not be submitted, may or may not find a home.
“Read, read, read. Read everything — trash, classics, good and bad, and see how they do it. Just like a carpenter who works as an apprentice and studies the master. Read! You’ll absorb it.
Then write. If it’s good, you’ll find out. If it’s not, throw it out of the window.”
Some people feel they should not read others or study the masters because it will influence their voice; however, experts recommend that is where you begin in order to develop your voice. Finding your voice takes time and it takes writing, regardless of who you read. But you do, without a doubt, need to read far and wide.