Pic courtesy Mueredicine, Flickr
Barton turns furiously against the crowd. BARTON I'm a writer, you monsters! I CREATE! He points at his head. BARTON ...This is my uniform! He taps his skull. BARTON ...THIS is how I serve the common man! THIS is where I – WHAPP! An infantry man tags Barton's chin on the button. Bodies surge. The crowd gasps. The band blares nightmarishly on.
- A passage from the screenplay to Barton Fink (1991), by Ethan and Joel Coen.
It's time for another monthly challenge. It's been a while. It's time to focus on something for one month, and see if I can improve my situation. I've been debating over a number of different ideas- a few areas of my life need a good kick up the arse- but I think I've identified the most currently attainable target. It's time I got some old stories published.
I've been putting off sending writing out for a long time while I sorted one thing out after another. But now I want to get back into the swing of firing out work, eating rejections like Weetabix (four at breakfast, at least) and pulling in the odd acceptance here and there.
Over the last few months I've polished off a number of short stories and poems that have been critiqued, rewritten and prepared for publication. Then I've left them gathering metaphorical dust on my hard drive. But they won't for much longer.
Using Duotrope's Digest, I plan to fire out each item ten times a piece. Once each one is done and in the outbox, I'll dig through some unfinished pieces, sharpen them and throw them to publishers too.
Due to Inland Revenue issues it would be more of a hinderance than a help to get paid for these stories, so I'll be giving these away for free. The upsides to doing this are numerous. Non-paying magazines are ran by editors who are much more willing to publish high numbers of stories from numerous contributors. Their magazines run like blog sites, updating numerous times daily. They have unlimited pages and unlimited copies. They are accessible to read by anyone with internet access anywhere in the world and cater for pretty much any niche of story you want. Online magazines that don't pay give the least rejections and all online magazines can be linked to other webpages- for instance, this blog.
It's time to put my metaphorical uniform on, like Mr Fink did, and start showing people just what it is I create.