I’ve been reflecting on my writing career so far as I rapidly approach my sixtieth birthday in January.
There have been many ups and downs over the years, but back when I started out in early 1992, if I’d been offered the publications I now have, I’d have sold my soul for them.
When I first started, all I wanted was to see my name in print. That was fine for a few years. I placed a whole shitload of stories in the small press for just a copy or two of the publications. I got quite cozy down there before I realized I wasn’t actually getting anywhere.
So then I wanted to get paid. Then I wanted a pro-rate story sale, then a novel sale, then a sale in a pro anthology, then a story collection…in hardcover… then I wanted to go full time… and lo and behold, it has all come to pass, and more, especially in the last 5 years. ( I also wanted to sell a film script to Hollywood – but let’s not go there. Okay? )
There’s still things I want to achieve – a story in one or more of the Year’s Best anthologies, a mass market book deal, a luxury yacht so I can just sail round the world all the time – that kind of thing. Some of them might even be achievable.
I recently sold my 80th pro-rate short story. Now I’m wondering whether 100 is feasible. Given that 25 years ago I was wondering whether 1 was feasible, I guess I’m doing something right.
But it’s in the nature of the beast that I’m never satisfied, always looking ahead to the next gold ring. ( I also get jealous of some of my fellow writers. Shush… don’t tell them.)
This past eighteen months has seen a necessary realignment for me with both Dark Renaissance and DarkFuse going out of business, bringing with that a load of stress I could have done without.
But the orphans are rehomed, and the new babies have also been adopted, so today I again decided to count my blessings and look at what I’ve achieved. I can’t quite say I’m content… but I’m happy.
For now, that’ll do.
In the meantime, I’ve got new and old works coming from Crossroad Press, a novella in the big I AM THE ABYSS antho from Dark Regions, a new collection, THE GHOST CLUB coming from Crystal Lake, a big bug novel, and another novel to write coming with Severed Press, I’m in discussions about a collection, and I’ve got a large secret project in the works that’s two-thirds of the way done. So it looks like I’m busy for a whole longer.
Onward and upwards.
To infinity and beyond.