Wednesday, March 4, 2015

IWSG, Rewards, and Links!

Guess what day it is, folks!

Well?

Any guesses?

Okay, okay, I'll tell you. I hate having to guess, too.

It's the first Wednesday of March, which means it's time for another cathartic meeting of the Insecure Writer's Support Group! And guess who's a co-host this month.

No worries, I don't really expect you to guess. It's me! Shout-out to my fellow co-hosts, Suzanne Sapseed and Chemist Ken. ~Waves~ And, of course, to our noble leader, the Ninja himself, Alex J. Cavanaugh, creator of IWSG.



Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!

Posting: The first Wednesday of every month is officially Insecure Writer’s Support Group day. Post your thoughts on your own blog. Talk about your doubts and the fears you have conquered. Discuss your struggles and triumphs. Offer a word of encouragement for others who are struggling. Visit others in the group and connect with your fellow writer - aim for a dozen new people each time. Be sure to link to this page and display the badge in your post.

Let’s rock the neurotic writing world!


Our Twitter hashtag is #IWSG

Each month on IWSG day, I post some numbers to keep myself accountable. These numbers, which will be posted below, are my stats on submissions of short stories for the month. Last month when I posted them, Donna Weaver left a comment with a great suggestion. She suggested doing something fun to reward yourself for every ten rejections, mentioning that James Dashner (author of The Maze Runner) took his wife out to dinner every tenth rejection he received, and that she was doing this, as well.

Here's the thing. I already reward myself for pieces that get accepted. Say hello to my little friends:


I get a new Funko Pop villain for each piece I get published. Some day I'll have shelves of these!

But it's true that many of us have ways of rewarding ourselves when we get a pat on the back from someone else, so to speak. We're rewarding ourselves for the end result. Some people buy themselves a special t-shirt, some get a pedicure or massage, others take themselves out for a treat. Shouldn't we be rewarding ourselves for putting in the work, pounding the literary pavement, submitting?

I haven't decided what my Ten Reward will be, but there will be one. Thank you, Donna!

Now, my monthly stats, and then I'll jump into links. These are for short stories. I am not submitting a novel at this time; I'm having far too much fun with short stories.

In February, I:

-Received 4 rejections

-2 publications I'd submitted to went defunct; one of these emailed me directly last night, the other was reported by Duotrope

-Submitted 3 stories

-Received 1 email stating a first reader felt my story deserved a second look, and that it had been moved to the next level of consideration

-Have 8 projects currently on submission

-Have 3 pieces I need to edit to begin submitting

-Had 1 publication come out with one of my flash fiction pieces in it. (Of Mist and Magic)

This month I also got my official headshots (Monday's post was about headshot tips) and set up my Amazon Author Page. In addition, I got back to my novel and am two chapters away from writing The End (then editing). 

While I wanted to do better this month, I think it was a good writing month, all told. 

LINKS

For those visiting my blog for the first time, I post links each Wednesday for places accepting submissions, writing contests, and things generally of interest to writers. I am not personally recommending any of these sites, just passing along markets I have come across.

Accepting Submissions:

Horrified Press and Thirteen O'Clock Press are open for submissions to various anthologies, including Idle Hands, seeking stories of horror born of boredom. Pays in royalties and exposure. 2000-4000 words. Deadline April 10. Also, Stories From the Graveyard, same deadline and pay, but can be up to 5000 words. 

Splickety Prime is looking for Wild West stories. All genres. Up to 1000 words. Pays $.02/word, plus a print contributor copy. Deadline April 10.

Jamais Vu - Journal of Strange Among the Familiar is accepting short fiction, book and film reviews, poetry, and non-fiction. Short fiction should be between 2000 and 4000 words. Other types have different restrictions. Pays $.05/word. Current deadline April 15. 

Lamplight Magazine is open for submissions of horror short stories. Flash fiction 1000 words or less, or short fiction 2000-7000 words. Pays $50 for flash, $150 for short. Current deadline April 15.

Crushing Hearts and Black Butterfly is looking for short stories and poetry for their anthology Love Sucks. They want "amusing tales of 'love gone wrong.'" Must have paranormal elements. 2000-10,000 words. Pay unknown. Deadline April 15. 

Mulberry Fork Review is seeking fiction and non-fiction, any genre, any type, including short fiction, flash fiction, creative non-fiction, personal essay, and poetry. Short stories up to 6000 words. Check website for other categories. Pay unknown. Open submissions.

Ember: A Journal of Luminous Things is looking for poetry, fiction, and creative non-fiction for all ages, including 10-18 year olds. Short stories up to 12,000 words. Pays $.01/word or $20, whichever is more. Open submissions.

New Haven Review wants your essays, fiction, and non-fiction of whatever length. They don't have a specific genre, but are looking for strong writing. Pays $500 for prose and non-fiction, $25 per poem. Open submissions.

Jitter Press is open for horror fiction, non-fiction, and poetry. Poetry up to 100 lines, short fiction up to 1500 words. Typically pays $1.50 token payment, but editor's choice gets $10. Open submissions.

Dark Futures Fiction accepts prose and poetry with a dark futuristic theme. 500-2000 words. Pays $2-$5, depending upon medium. Open submissions.

What are your insecurities? Do you reward yourself for various writing goals and achievements? How? Have you been submitting? Any publishing news? Any of these links helpful for you? Anything to share?

May you find your Muse.

117 comments:

  1. Shannon, thanks for co-hosting this month. I love your positive attitude. You don't let rejection get you down or keep you from moving forward. Sure, rejections hurt. But, hey, that's part of this crazy writing life. Congrats on your story getting moved up a notch. I hope next month you'll tell us it was accepted. Good luck.

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    1. It gets me down sometimes, but I push through it and become the eternal optimist again. I really hope I'm posting about that acceptance next month!

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  2. One publication is good.
    That's a clever idea. I'd do a guitar for every ten, but that might get expensive...
    Thanks again for co-hosting today.

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    1. Oh yeah, that would get way too expensive. If only you were a gazillionare.

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  3. Love the idea of rewarding ourselves not just for the successes but also for the work that went into them and for the work that goes into all we do.

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    1. Yes! If you're working at a day job you get paid for the work you do leading up to the final product, so why not have some manner of reward as writers?

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  4. The rewards system is a really great way to keep up the motivation. You've worked hard, made goal, etc so of course a little treat for yourself is on the menu.

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    1. Definitely! Motivation can be hard to come by. Why make it so hard?

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  5. Treating ourselves with kindness is always a good thing. You're also motivating me to get into a similar routine. Best of success in your search, Shannon. Thanks for co-hosting for IWSG day.

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    1. Good luck! I'd love to hear what Tens Reward you go with.

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  6. I really loved your new head shots, I wish I had been the lucky photographer! ;-) congratulations on teh flash fiction!!

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    1. I do love your photography! You've got an amazing eye.

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  7. I've yet to reward myself for anything.
    Maybe I should.
    Thanks for all the great info.
    TY for co-hosting!
    Heather

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  8. I've been submitting in binge fashion lately and actually had to pull one back as it got accepted twice. (oops!) Thanks for the links. I revel a day or two with the rare acceptance but know there's much more to do. Thanks for co-hosting this month.

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    1. Hey, it could be worse than getting a double acceptance, right? How did you make the choice on which to stick with?

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  9. Thank for the list for submission sites. Your post is appreciated.

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  10. That's a great idea to go out, or find some kind of reward, for submitting and receiving rejects. It means you're putting it out there! You're working. You're trying. I had a table reading of my latest play with a delicious brunch. That was very rewarding!
    Thanks for co-hosting this month and for posting link!!
    Play off the Page

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    1. That sounds amazing! A certain sign of accomplishing something.

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  11. Thanks for co-hosting! Wow, you are on top of things. I'm thoroughly impressed. And I think it's great you're rewarding yourself! You deserve it.

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    1. I just saw everything you've got going on. Do you reward yourself through it?

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  12. Shared your post! And I reward myself after I've finished a writing session with a dark chocolate square. Today, I'm fortunate to have written my ISWG post. That's about all the writing I will get in today. Gotta go to work.

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    1. Thank you for sharing it! A dark chocolate square sounds divine.

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  13. Thank you for co-hosting! You have so much out there, and I think that's awesome! I haven't used a reward for my rejection letters either, but I like that every ten rejections idea. I think we should both do that!
    And, as always, thanks for all those links! Even if I don't use them all, they are great to check out!

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    1. Let's do it! What do you think you will do as your reward?

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  14. Oh, I love the Funko figures and this is such a great idea for a reward! No doubt soon enough you won't have room for all of them.
    Have fun co-hosting!

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  15. Wow, thanks for co-hosting and for sharing that cool reward system. Now if I can bring myself to think of actually doing it! I love your Funko Pop villians! Never heard of them before... You are a busy bee...

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    1. I don't remember how I happened across the villains (or Funko Pop as a whole), but I'm so glad I found them!

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  16. A little reward to ourselves can sure keep us going

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  17. Dinner out for every 10 rejections. I love that idea! Thanks for hosting!

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    1. Kind of makes you look forward to those rejections!

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  18. My daughter already has a shelf full of Funko-Pops. She tends toward the Marvel characters. Keep rewarding yourself in any way that keeps you writing.

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    1. They have so many fun ones. I've been finding others I want, but am trying to keep it to villains right now. I'd love to have Iron Man, but he'll have to wait.

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  19. I want that witch sooo bad! Can you believe that I've never rewarded myself for contracts or published work? Gosh, I'm terrible to myself! :P I need to change that. I'll have to think of something.

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    1. I got the witch directly from the Wizard of Oz Museum in Kansas. We stopped there while driving back from Kansas City. I hope you do change that and do something special for yourself! You're always accomplishing so much.

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  20. You are doing well. I heartily congratulate you on your efforts, your successes, and the direction in which you are heading.

    Arlee Bird
    A to Z Challenge Co-host
    Tossing It Out

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  21. My husband and I do a small celebration every time I get a new contract or have a month of good sales. It's very important to reward oneself.

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    1. That's great! Rewarding oneself is definitely important.

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  22. Celebrate the small things and you will enjoy the journey that leads to the Big Thing, only to realize that the small victories made the journey worthwhile! Smart Lady!! :-)

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  23. Love your post, Shannon. I'm a firm believer in rewarding myself for even small accomplishments. Those baby steps can be just as important as the grand finale. Blessings.

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    1. They definitely can. It just took me awhile to figure that out.

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  24. Rewards are essential. Thanks for reminding me. Off to make dinner reservations right now.

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    1. Yay! I hope you went somewhere lovely.

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    2. I did! And I overate to celebrate and reward myself for making it as far as I have in this writing business. Great idea. I think I'll start a Rewards Club for Writers. If I do, hope you'll join. :-)

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  25. I LOVE this idea of rewarding yourself after so many rejections. Normally I frown, look at this picture of a fat unicorn I keep on my desk, and then deplete my wine stash. Everyone gets rejections. It's part of this life. But wow... now I can build up my book collection / try new restaurants or even cash in some massages from the BF (he said he'd do anything to support me on this dream. "Got my tenth rejection. Start rubbing those feet!" Thanks for posting the links for submissions as well - that's awesome!

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    1. I think you will rock this Tenth Reward deal! I'm curious about the fat unicorn.

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  26. Congrats to you on your accepted publications and for hanging in there submitting in bulk! Amazing. I love your energy and enthusiasm. Hello Fun Funk characters! Going to google Funko villains. I hope the company can make enough of these cute little creatures to keep up with your successes!!

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    1. They sell out of them at a good pace, so I think I have competition!

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  27. That one publication must feel good, and there are more pending. Way to go!! I like your reward process with the Funko characters, and need to think of what would work for me. Writing short stories is fun. May try that again. Thanks for co-hosting!

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    1. I really enjoy writing short stories. Probably more than novel writing, but not significantly more.

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  28. I like the idea of rewarding yourself for the work of submitting. I may have to add that to the games I play with myself to stay motivated!

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    1. What kinds of games do you play to keep motivated?

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  29. Great post! Love the idea of rewarding yourself after a rejection - definitely going to have to try this! I reward myself for reaching certain milestones (e.g. finishing a first draft, finishing a final draft etc) by baking. My partner always knows if I've completed something to a deadline because the house always smells of cake when he walks in ;)!

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    1. Yummy reward! Have you seen Not Another Happy Ending? In it, she bakes when she's blocked, so her publisher freaks out when he calls and hears the clattering of pans. Glad your baking is a positive thing!

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  30. Sometimes I wish I wrote short stories, so I'd be able to submit to literary magazines and contests. I've only been able to write short stories when they feature pre-existing characters.

    I'm planning to finally get my third earlobe piercings done this month, though I don't know what kind of writing-related reward I could make it into just yet.

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    1. I was going to get my nose pierced as a reward for my first paid short story being published, but that magazine ended up going under before that issue came out, so I never did the piercing. Hmm.

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  31. Congrats on your productive month, Shannon! And thanks for co-hosting! I love the idea of rewarding myself for hard work. I'm not at the submission stage, but maybe I'll reward myself for steps along the way as I complete my manuscript! Have a good one!

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    1. I think that would be a great idea! Kind of like what you said about eating an elephant one bite at a time (I think that was it?). There should be a reward for each bite, right?

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  32. I'm always impressed with your writing accomplishments! Congrats on your publications and I love the idea of rewarding yourself for hard work. :)

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  33. I really like your Funko pop villains! Adorable and less calories than chocolate or celebratory glasses of wine (although rewarding yourself with either of those are definitely understandable too.) Great productive month for you!

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    1. Less calories and they don't give me migraines like wine and chocolate (sad face)! Not to say that stops me from occasionally enjoying one or the other. Chocolate more often. Yum.

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  34. That is a good idea to reward rejections; after all, they come with as much work as getting acceptances. Those Funko Pops are awesome. I'm a fan of villains.

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  35. I *love* the Ten Reward system! I hope to be needing it shortly. Lovely blog, Shannon! This is my first IWSG Wednesday and I'm loving all the creativity I've seen. ;-)

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  36. What a great month! Congrats to you--I could only imagine. I like the idea of buying a doo-dad for each publication. I'm thinking on that.

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    1. I'm so glad I found them! I did buy a couple retroactively once I decided to collect them for this, but now I get them upon acceptance.

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  37. I am in love with the Funko Pop villain. My reward system is Tattoos. One for my first published book (a lotus flower). I'll get one for my first best seller (still waiting on that one). I'll have to think about some other rewards. They have to be special!

    Good luck with your submissions!

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    1. Great rewards! I like having something physical to represent the accomplishments, and a tattoo qualifies. For the rejections, I'll make it fleeting, just as I want the sting of the rejection to be.

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  38. You have been busy! Good luck on your submissions!

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  39. Wow you are so active, wish I got half your energy. Good idea you have there, rewarding yourself is cool, you deserve it.

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  40. I use a portion of my money from freelance writing to buy books. I think that's a reward in and of itself. Best of luck and may you continue to accept but success and waiting in line with as much gusto as you do now. Thanks for co-hosting.

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    1. That's an excellent way to reward yourself! Books. What writer doesn't love books?

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  41. Kudos to you, submitting is the key. Success will be had. Thanks for co-hosting!

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  42. I think you have a great reward system. I should try something like that, myself.

    Also, thanks for the links...I'm going to look into the Wild West opportunity....and thanks for co-hosting this month!

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    1. Yay, I hope you have fun writing a Wild West story! I love that era so much, yet have only written two things in that setting.

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  43. Thanks for all those links-- that's a lot of work! Now that I've finally convinced myself to start submitting work, I'm absolutely going to reward my failures. Beautiful idea. Congrats on your successes!

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    1. I'm glad you've started submitting! Good luck with it.

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  44. What an awesome idea. I need to come up with an every ten reward, too!! Thanks to you and Donna :) And thank you for co-hosting this month!

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  45. That's a good idea. It's a great way to keep the rejection blues away. =D

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    1. Yes, and I need something to keep those blues away!

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  46. Getting over ourselves and submitting is so important. Great post! Thanks for co-hosting!

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    1. Submitting makes all the difference. You can't get anywhere without it.

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  47. Hi Shannon,
    Thanks for hosting. Wow, you're busy - how do you keep it all straight in your head?? I'll definitely be keeping an eye out for your wednesday submissions blog and your headshots advice is excellent.
    Thanks,
    Angie

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    1. Happily, I have Excel to keep it straight for me! I have a spreadsheet of all my submissions, with tabs for acceptances, rejections, and other (as in, having a magazine tank, because I'm definitely not going to consider that a rejection). Angela, I couldn't get to your blog to come visit you back. I'm not sure if it was my computer giving me issues, but I can't view anything on your Google Plus page to get me to a blog for you. :(

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  48. You did do an amazing job, you should be proud. Yes, you do get rejections, but you have had a few stories accepted too, which is fantastic! The reward system sounds good and you are so right. Why don't we treat ourselves for a job well done? All the best for March. Thank you for the kind words on my blog.

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    1. Exactly! It's time to start rewarding ourselves for the blood, sweat, and tears, not just the printed pages.

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  49. Funko Pop villains are awesome and congratulations Shannon!

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  50. That's a lot of coals in the fire! Good luck with everything. And I'll check out these links this morning as I'm looking to start querying.

    Love the Funko Pop villains!

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    1. Good luck as you move forward with querying!

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  51. I meant to comment on your last post, sorry, something interrupted me. Love the photo's and all good points on having one taken!
    Your links are always appreciated! I love the reward idea, I need to find something similiar! Like a new hairdo for losing 10 pounds! :)

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    1. Yes! I've rewarded myself for weight loss in the past, so why did I never think of it in relation to rejections?

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  52. congratulations on the publication! i love your freddy kreuger.. & the clown! very freaky!! :D

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    1. I had to get Freddy and Pennywise. And the Xenomorph! They're some of my favorite villains.

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  53. Those figurines are cute. Is that the clown from the horror movie "IT?"

    You have way more irons in the fire than I've had in months. Boy do I feel like a slacker! Ha!. I like the idea of rewarding oneself and I've neglected to do that when good things happen. Sometimes I might reward myself with a pastry treat every now and then but that's usually due to holidays and not necessarily work related milestones.

    It's nice that the one defunct place had the courtesy to contact you directly with the status of their company and the work you submitted. All other publishers and companies would be best to follow suit because it sucks hearing about the disappearance of a place through a third-party.

    I submitted an article to a magazine a long time ago and didn't hear back from the editor. When I followed up, she didn't have any news about whether she even read it or not and suggested that I contact her within 1-2 months. I didn't follow up again and to be honest, I really don't like the waiting game...I get enough of that from film festival submissions and all of the rejection letters that come with that process.

    Congrats on your flash fiction being published!

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    1. Yes, that's Pennywise from IT! I've seen all you've done in the past, and you're not slacker. The pastry treat makes me think of milk shakes. I haven't had a milk shake in so long. Maybe that will be one of my Ten Rewards. I agree. I'm glad he sent out the email. He wasn't happy to be closing down, but none of them are. He's the first that contacted me directly out of three, though. I don't understand how she could not have news. That would make me nervous about having my work in her hands, anyway, if she can't keep track of her submissions.

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  54. You have had a busy month. Best of luck with your submissions.
    I haven't rewarded myself for finishing a work or submitting or anything, but it's a neat idea. Will have to try it when/if I get some good news.
    Thanks for co-hosting this month.

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  55. Sounds to me like you had a productive month! When I reach a milestone or accomplish something like finishing edits, I take myself out to IHOP. I love their pancakes. It gives me something to look forward to. Good luck with your submissions! Thanks for co-hosting IWSG!

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    1. I think that's a great idea! I've set myself a reward of finishing the last two chapters of this novel: a milkshake! I haven't let myself have a milkshake in years, because they're insanely high in calories. But when I get these last two chapters done, I get to go get one.

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  56. I'll try to contain myself, but I adore Funko! What a cool reward to give yourself. You make a good point about rewarding yourself for rejections; I mean just as much effort went into those submission, so why not be rewarded for your effort.
    I'm a little late, but so glad I made it. Seeing your link list has reminded me to get off my bottom and get in touch.
    Thanks bunches for co-hosting this month.

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    1. What are your favorite Funkos? Do you collect a certain kind?

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  57. That is such a cool way of rewarding yourself! I bake cookies each time I get an acceptance, release a new book, and finish writing a book. I should think of a way to reward myself for rejections. Thanks for the list of links! :) Have a terrific weekend.

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    1. Yum, cookies! That's a good reward. Nothing expensive, but satisfying all the same.

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  58. Is it weird that I've never thought of rewarding myself like that? Maybe I should try it. Might help me get on the ball more.

    And hey, congrats on being 2 chapters away from THE END. That's probably the best news from all of this! We're going to both be stoked to read it, whenever it makes its way to bookshelves.

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  59. Thank you for co-hosting IWSG this month!
    Like you, I'm having LOADS of fun writing short pieces/flash fiction.
    From the beginning of the year, I also committed to writing one haiku EVERY DAY. I'm on track thus far.

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