Month: June 2015

‘Lens’ Published in Fewer Than 500 and an Upcoming Publication in the Jan/Feb Issue of Unbroken Journal!

Today my very short flash fiction ‘Lens’ was published at Fewer Than 500. I would tell you what it is about but, considering it is only 59 words long, I think you should check it out for yourself, which you can do by following this link here.

I also had some good poetry news: another one of my prose poems will be featured in Unbroken Literary Journal‘Tessellation’ will be featured in their January/February 2016 issue. This means that I’ll have at least one poem featured in the next three issues of the publication, which I’m very excited and proud about.

Upcoming Publication in Flash Fiction Magazine!

I’m really excited to announce that I have an upcoming publication in Flash Fiction Magazine. My flash ‘Like Old Times’ will be published online on Thursday 16th July.

Flash Fiction Magazine is an amazing online publication who publish a piece of flash fiction every day. They have a wide readership (approximately 14,000 followers on Twitter, for example) and I love the work they publish. It’s great to have the opportunity to be featured among many great stories and writers.

It also means I’m allowed to put this on my website:

featured

Now that too is pretty cool!

Of course I’ll post again once the piece has been published and is available to read online, or maybe you’ve already signed up to their mailing list? You can sign up on their site, and you should definitely check out the flash fiction they publish, which you can do by following this link.

Writing Spreadsheets: 7 Ways a Simple Spreadsheet Keeps You Organised and Motivated

In June 2014 I had my first piece of writing published. It was a piece of flash fiction called ‘What We Do In Our Sleep’ published in the 2014 National Flash-Fiction Day Anthology Eating My Words, and I was absolutely thrilled to have my first taste of publication. I had another piece, ‘Me, But From The Future’, published in FlashFlood as a part of National Flash-Fiction Day in June too. You can find the details of both of these stories in the Publications section.

That was a year ago, and now I have 15 pieces of writing published or scheduled for publication. Now I don’t know if this number is good or not, but I’m very proud of myself and very happy with my current rate of success, mainly because 13 of these pieces of writing have been published or accepted for publication in 2015. That’s an average of two pieces of writing a month.

There are lots of things that have helped me to achieve this: reading publications to assess what they like to publish, writing, rewriting, editing, reading, reading, reading, and more reading. That, of course, contributes, but over Christmas of 2014 I made a spreadsheet to keep tabs of my submissions. I’d heard that one of my creative writing tutors did this and thought, hey, if I want to get more of my writing published then this must be something that can help me.

There are 7 ways keeping a simple spreadsheet has helped me with my writing, and if it can help me then hopefully it can help you too:

  1. I know what writing I have sent out for consideration and where I sent it. This is important to know because many competitions and calls for submissions do not like simultaneous submissions.
  2. I know when I should hear back from the editor of the journal or magazine, or when the competition results should be announced. This is good to know in case I need to chase up publications where I haven’t had an email of acceptance or rejection.
  3. In the case of a rejection I put a little red box by the story but this is a great thing – it means I know that this piece of writing is available to submit somewhere else, and I usually have somewhere else lined up. This means I can get the rejected piece, after another once over, back out there.
  4. In the case of an acceptance I put a yellow box by the story and a little star and this makes me feel fantastic every time I check out my spreadsheet. It’s also pretty motivational – it makes me want more little stars on my spreadsheet.
  5. If the submission is active then there’s a little green box, and this means I’m waiting to find out if the piece of writing has been accepted or rejected, but also tells me I cannot (in most cases) send it out to someplace else.
  6. My spreadsheet can shame me into submitting writing. That sounds weird, but basically, as I record the date I send submissions, I can see if I haven’t submitted something for a while. Now of course life and studies and other things get in the way, but when I see I haven’t submitted something for a while it inspires me to do so. If it’s a case where I don’t have any writing “ready” to submit, it encourages me to review my writing, or write more!
  7. By recording where I’ve sent writing I can see what I have sent to places before. I tend not to resend the same story to a publication; they’ve read it once, and didn’t like it, so they’re not likely to want to read it again.

Now it doesn’t have to be fancy, and it doesn’t need to be able to do anything incredible – it just needs to be simple for you to use and contains whatever information works best for you.

I’m really intrigued to know if any of you writers also keep a spreadsheet to track your submissions, or, if you don’t use a spreadsheet, what do you use? Is it helpful? Is this helpful to you?

‘Everything She Wanted’ Published in ‘The Write-In’ for National Flash Fiction Day!

The Write-In for National Flash Fiction Day is an online journal which is open for submissions for 24 hours only. You’re required to select a prompt (and there are plenty to choose from) and write a story up to 500 words.

I’ve just done so this morning and here is the result: ‘Everything She Wanted’, which you can read by following this link.

I hope you enjoy it, and feel inspired to submit your own piece of writing!

‘Miss/Hit’ Published in FlashFlood – and Happy National Flash Fiction Day Everyone!

My very short flash fiction ‘Miss/Hit’ has been published in FlashFlood as a part of National Flash Fiction Day, which is today! You can read my story by following this link here. There’s already a really nice comment on there about it! Thrilled!

There’s so much going on today! There are free events in Bristol, as well as other places, and we also have The Write In where you’re required to write a piece of flash fiction from one of the prompts featured on the website.

So get involved!

You can check out details of what’s happening today on the National Flash-Fiction Day website and blog.
You can join The Write In if you’re up for the challenge! The link is here –> The Write In.

Happy National Flash Fiction Day everyone! I’ll be heading to this event in Bristol tonight and I’m so excited! 11249098_994592180574437_6512978828450806443_n

‘High Street’ Published at 101 Words Today!

My 101 word flash fiction ‘High Street’ is now available to read over at 101 Words! You can check it out by clicking this lush title picture that they have designed.

high-street-1024x512

I like this graphic a lot. Anyhow – I would tell you about the story, but as it is only 101 words in length you can read it within the time it would take for you to continue reading this post……ah you’re gone? Nope? Still here? Go read it!

If you like the writing featured then why not submit to them too? They’re a great literary journal celebrating flash fiction.

Landmarks: 2015 National Flash-Fiction Day – Out Now!

Landmarks, the 2015 National Flash-Fiction Anthology (pictured below) is now available from Amazon in paperback by following this link. It will feature my flash fiction ‘Saharan Shades’.

51WZlioRwKL

There are over 60 flash fictions in this anthology, which is based on the theme of Geography, and having volunteered behind-the-scenes to help put this anthology together I can tell you now that it is a great anthology of flash fiction. There are hugely talented flash fiction writers included in this collection and a vast array of stories.

My flash, ‘Saharan Shades’, is a tale of fear, beauty, and thought captured during six thoughts in the Sahara desert. I won’t give away the rest! I’m looking forward to receiving my copy so I can read these brilliant stories on the page.

Congratulations to everyone who has been published in this year’s anthology! I’m looking forward to the official National Flash-Fiction Day event, which is at Foyles Bookstore in Bristol on Saturday 27th June. Entry is free!

11249098_994592180574437_6512978828450806443_nIf you’re free make sure you come! Last year’s event was incredible and I’m really looking forward to hearing great flash fiction being read by these writers.