It looks like I can submit to The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction in the next two weeks. Spending a lot of January nursing sick people kind of got in the way, but things have cleared up a lot and mid-Feb looks pretty solid to get this done. The first submission is the hardest, but then you have a formatted story and can just cut and paste as needed if you need to do it again and again. I was going to go with Asimov’s, but MSF has a higher pay rate for the length of story I’m submitting.
Got my edits back and I could publish as-is, but it would be best long-term to go ahead and do rewrites. What I wanted to publish suffered from staring at it too long myself and starting to not-see basic continuity issues. There is a slice of life short story I will send out to magazines in the New Year, but I also have a lot more work to do to set up the pen name so it’s easy to use. This is why self-editing is not the best approach for the vast majority of writers. You can figure out basic spelling errors yourself, but since it’s your story, sometimes you just stop being able to step outside of it and approach the plot, form, structure and characters cold-eyed. Pro edits aren’t expensive, even for novel-length and they’re worth it regardless of whether you pull it back or push it out. Many self-published writers I personally buy the books of do 2 or even 3 editing passes before publishing.
Honestly, if it was a novel-length manuscript, I’d perhaps take my chances in the marketplace, because people are more forgiving with novel-length work being corrected here and there on the fly, but it was a novella and those are higher-risk and low-medium reward.
Working on arranging our household so we can all do more physical activity is going to be the main project this year. Sounds unrelated, but having more energy and muscle mass helps with cognitively demanding tasks like writing and with the organizational aspects of finding the time in a household where a bunch of other cognitively demanding things are going on.
So the revised plan is to find time for rewrites and some other work and to submit the other story to Asimov’s (might as well start at the top!) January or Feb, unless they don’t have open submissions then in which case I’ll submit to some other “top” market with open submissions.
So I think updating every couple months is probably the best way to keep me on track. So another update in February!
I have to find a cover artist and get a blurb done (real terror there) and I should have something out this year or early in Jan. The cover art turnarounds are sometimes long.