I’m aware I have a bit of a reputation for writing a lot.
I’m not sure I do, really – I average about 1200 words a day. Over the course of a year it works out to a lot of words, and a lot of stories, novellas and novels. I also end up throwing a fair bit aside in editing. For example, this year it adds up to 2 novels, 2 novellas and 24 short stories. For a full time writer, which is what I am these days, it certainly doesn’t feel like I’m pushing it – I could do more. A lot more. Other writers certainly do, and I know folks who average twice what I manage, and do it easily.
What I am good at, to a degree, is finding appropriate markets. It’s something I honed back in the small press days before the internet, when a lot of time was spent just seeking out venues to send stuff to, and some of the habits I developed then have stuck with me in that I monitor subs in a spreadsheet, and track who responds, who doesn’t, and who asks for more.
These days I tend to only submit short stories to higher paying venues, a tactic that has been paying off for me for a few years now, and to markets I’ve already had a foothold in. It also helps a lot to have long term contracts with several of the genre publishers like Dark Regions Press, Dark Renaissance and, in particular DarkFuse, so that I’ve had open avenues for publication for the longer pieces for a couple of years now too.
So all of that adds up to the fact that I’ve got a fairly high visibility now in several genres for a variety of publishers, and I think that works in my favor when something of mine lands in front of a new editor.
It also means that I’ve been getting stuff published in a lot of different venues, at regular intervals, so I suppose that’s why it appears to onlookers that I’m really prolific.
In reality, I’m over here wondering whether I’m doing enough, fretting that I don’t get noticed as much as I’d like, fearing that I’m slacking, and feeling the cold grip of Father Time on my neck as I head toward my seventh decade in a couple of years time.
I have roads to travel yet, stories to tell, and stopping doesn’t appear to be an option, so if I am prolific, you’re stuck with me for a few more years yet.