Some of you already know this, but some of you don’t: my short story, “Melbourn’s Storm” will be published in the September 2012 issue of LORE magazine.
That makes that my first paid professional fiction sale. And yeah, I’m pretty over-the-moon happy about it.
|Not this issue. The next one.|
But instead of strutting around and crowing about what a great job I did on this magnificent piece of literature… I’d rather thank the many people who took time and effort to help me turn this slightly odd piece of dark fantasy fiction into what it is now.
“Melbourn’s Storm” gave me fits and nearly drove me around the bend, but in the end I was lucky. I had friends who read the different versions, offered feedback and criticism, and gave me instructions on how to improve it. I always said I’d thank them, and this seems the best way to do it.
First of all, thanks to the members of North County Writers of Speculative Fiction, who were the first folks I shared the story with – and who immediately put me to work improving it: Meghan “M.O.” Muriel, Rilan White, Stephen Prosapio, Melinda Layden, Linda Lee Franson, Gregg Pirazzini, and Alix Lamb.
Secondly, I want to thank both Tony Durham and Casey Oliver for being the first folks on this blog to say, “That’s pretty good, but…” This was only Tony’s first help with this, and Casey remains the one online-only friend who offered to help.
Thirdly, I have to give a huge “Thank You!” to several folks who beta read the story when I had completely frozen up – unable to finish corrections and fix the problems that existed inside it: John David Carter, Jim Griffith, Jim Case, Glen MacDougal, Laura Brooks, Tony Durham, Leif Hassell, and Tom Beck.
Lastly, I need to think Liza Smith. Because it is she who puts up with me muttering and cussing as I write, growling as I delete details, reciting lines of dialogue again and again until I’m satisfied. It is she who lets me occasionally hijack entire conversations to seek her advice on what design a door should be, on the spelling of a character’s name, or on whether or not that much-parroted line of dialogue actually makes sense.
I also need point out that these hijacked conversations usually occur at relatively unimportant times – like while we’re traveling by car on vacation, at a restaurant out for dinner, spending time with friends, or about three minutes after she’s just fallen asleep.
I’ll probably never do this again; it seems odd to do so. But from the bottom of my ink-stained heart, I’d like to thank each and every one of you for giving me that kind word or kick in the pants I needed at just the right time.