I’ve been actively writing / revising stories since my last update, and here’s where I’m at on Exploitation and Other Stories. The progress I’ve made will depend upon what genres I include in it. My original intention was to have it be a collection of science fiction stories, and if I stuck with that intention, it would be about 57,000 words long. The fantasy stories would add another 10,000 words, and I’m comfortable including them. The question is whether or not I ought to include the flash fiction pieces like “Parable” (about 5,000 words) and the mysteries like “Stones” (another 16,000 words). If I include all of them, then I would have enough for the collection to be published (my goal is to have about 90,000 words). However, I would still need to get the cover art and copy edit done, and there is another issue: some of the stories have been published (or will be), and I have to wait a certain amount of time before I can reprint them. If I exclude those stories, then the SF part will drop by about 5,000 words; if I wait, then the earliest I can publish it is in April. In other words, it isn’t ready yet no matter what I do, but it is a lot closer than it was a week ago.
I haven’t done any other writing this week, and I don’t expect to add any more poems to this year’s collection. One reason I haven’t worked on my longer works (novels, novellas), is that I wanted to work my way back into writing fiction by focusing on the short stories. They longer works will be next on my agenda, since my folder full of partial stories and story ideas has been pretty much cleaned up. All I have left in it are scenes without plots, characters without stories, beginnings that lead nowhere, and stories threatening to be novels / novellas. Overall, I feel pretty good about where I’m at right now, especially since I did very little writing from August to mid-December.