Thursday, September 16, 2010

The Inventory

So, recently, I went through what stories I have on my computer. These are the rough numbers:

-? an unknown number of unwritten stories (though probably over 50) for which I have made quick notations as they occurred to me. These include:
  • a weird west Chinese gunslinger story
  • an instillation artist vs. a zombie invasion
  • a puppeteer in a house of imperial courtesans
  • a love story in a restaurant called "Baba Yaga's Dancing Chicken Shack" with some notes about folk-tale themed dishes the place would serve.
I have been scribbling notes down on receipts, spare pieces of paper, the backs of class notebooks, just whatever's handy. Many of these are affixed to my refrigerator with magnets, and, honestly, I don't look at them much, but they're there when I need them.

-About 50 unfinished stories. In my defense, the bulk of these come from a weekly group exercise I was a part of in which we would be assigned a quick prompt and then given one hour in which to complete a story. Some of these were the disposable trash one might expect, but I got some real gems too, and I hope to go back to many of them.

-About 75 first drafts. Between hour writing on one site and contests on another, I have finished a fair bit of fiction, but I have a great deal of anxiety about editing. I realize it's something I just need more practice at, but it has had an unfortunate tendency to actually make stories worse. Even among the best of these stories, I don't feel there are any ready to send out yet.

-About 10-15 stories in some stage of editing.

-6 stories currently in submission rotation, of which 3 are flash.

-1 published story.

I went through this list and looked at which stories I was absolutely sure I wanted to publish. These were my personal favorites, and the ones I think show off my best as a writer. I came up with 28 out of that list of 125 written and partially written stories, which is a little easier to work with. For the 17 that were first drafts, I'm going to see if I can find a magazine home to submit them to, and if I can, I'll edit up the ones I think I can place first.

Those 17 are (in alphabetical order by title (not appearing)):
  • the beetle creation myth
  • the wish granted to the schizophrenic
  • the slipstream thing in the car trunk
  • the noveau-arabian nights fable with the pastry
  • the story about the maze and the guy destined to die 100000 times
  • the flash dream piece with the lizards
  • the arctic unicorns story
  • the kid's fiction about fear and manticores
  • the swamp witch love story
  • the punk rock version of the orpheus myth
  • the story where they show crazy people in a circus
  • the flash about virgin sacrifices in a divine brothel
  • the story about the old female knight coming home
  • the story about the dragon rider pirates
  • the jazz era retelling of Eros and Psyche
  • the hungry ghost story/ Chinese festival story
So that's my plan.

Happy Bicentenial Mexican Independence Day!

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