Getting it done.

For an odd three weeks I had nothing to submit.

Since I have adopted my Write/Work like a Motherfucker Ethos this is a really weird feeling.

Of course that happens when I was supposed to submit to two magazines I like a lot. Whoops.

I’ve got it licked though. I have some stuff ready to go out after some good market research.

I’ve been doing pretty well at staying on top of my submissions. Sending queries, withdrawing a few things (that always pains me), you know the business things.

Last night while I was working well past when I should have stopped something bad happened, I sent a submission and realized I’d made a misspelling in my little cover letter and I promptly had a meltdown and wanted to die of embarrassment.  I haven’t done that in so long I had a fit and rage quit working and sat in the tub stewing about it. I wanted to send a withdrawal and an apology for being a dumbass. I didn’t but I’m still thinking about it because fuck. Fuck really?

I freaked out. I’m still feeling awful about it.

BUT I did check my calender and some good stuff is happening so I feel sort of better.

I have new work coming out in a couple of weeks. One of my Hood Noir stories is coming out in Yellow Mama and next month one of my erotic crime stories will be out in print in Infernal Ink.

A word about what I’m calling Hood Noir.

I have a problem using the term “urban”. Urban in our culture is code for Black and a few years ago the spate of “Urban” fiction was fucking awful. Poorly written shit that was only Urban because it invariably used a lot of “street” language and had to do with Black people and terrible hip hop tropes blablabla.

The problem was not that these books were being written and published. The problem was that it narrowed down the idea of Urban to a small margin. I found it fairly offensive.

Thus I don’t use the term.

It’s the same problem I tend to have with anything labeled Chick Lit. It’s not the term but it’s the use of the term.

What else?

I also got an acceptance at Loose Leaf Tea. Did I tell y’all that? I’m really happy about that. The mission statement of the magazine when I first read it just spoke to me and then I finished that story and thought it was perfect for that place. It’s really gratifying when your instincts are right on.

I’m still in the midst of angst about the erotica I’ve been writing. In the world of erotic romance I don’t honestly feel like my work and point of view necessarily has a place. Beyond the romanticization of erotica (a term I saw on the Oh Get a Grip blog) given the visuals I see and a lot of the characters in stories I read, where do my characters fit in?

They are not perfect with their flat bellies and long flowing ebon hair. They aren’t shy but super gorgeous. They generally aren’t defaulted to White.

In one story (that I got a very nice rejection for) I did have to change it to specify that the character was a Black woman because talking about her cornrows wasn’t enough.

I didn’t want to change how I described her because it didn’t really fit with the rest of the piece and that was sort of the nail in the coffin for a while. It can be very clear to me when White editors are reading and not seeing or understanding when a character is being coded as a person of color. That’s a difficult thing for me. I don’t want to have to describe a character in ways that make it easy for White readers to understand that X character is not a White person. It’s not really my style nor is it really my preference as a reader.

If I say a character is brown, that doesn’t mean they are a tan White person. You know?

I don’t know.

I’m at the point where thinking about this and trying to navigate my feelings about it, keeping the integrity of my work and whatnot is just too exhausting. I’ll keep writing the filth I’ll just put it away for later use in case the market opens back up to a wider diversity of style etc.

It bums me out. It’s not the first time and for damn sure won’t be the last.

Intersectional angst.

In less angsty news how about some stats? I’m feeling really good about my output right now. Duotrope says this about my percentages right now:

OVERALL FICTION POETRY NON-FIC
Pending Submissions: 8 3 3 2
Sent Past 12 Months: 55 35 11 9
Sent This Month: 4 1 1 2
Acceptance Ratio: 34.2%* 33.3%* 42.9%* 25%*

 

The other day I logged in rejection #80 in my run to 100. I’m pretty excited about that.  I can’t wait to show you the full list.

I also have 1 non duotrope listed piece out.

For the rest of the week I’m planning on finishing up some flash pieces, transcribing some poetry out of my notebook and refining an essay about feminism.

I’m also in dire need of getting my budget/saving plan for a chromebook back on schedule. Unfortunately I had to spend what I’d saved on bills and food.  My poor desktop at home is so slow and unstable. I’m slowly backing things up but my dvd burner no longer works so I’m having to cloud store/move to usb when I can all my work and important documents. I’m hoping she’ll last until can get a chromebook. Pray to the Gods of Technology that this happens.

Okay that’s all.

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