100 Blue Flags.

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For a while I was submitting stories ‘right left and centre’, but recently I have been a bit more selective.

I tell you this because I know I would have hit the magic 100 mark a lot more quickly if I had kept up the submission pace. [It took 13 months to hit the 100 mark]

As luck would have it, my 100th rejection letter was an excellent email which contained some very positive comments and a few suggestions.

Near Miss

I got the feeling that the story did not miss selection by very much.

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Over the past few months, my focus has changed.

Instead of flogging a few stories to various Lit’ Mags across the world I have decided to concentrate on the ones that published my stories.

Amazingly, there are a few.

But the real focus is to select the best of my stories and self publish them.

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This is a slow and mildly expensive process but it offers the prospect of reaching a wider audience, and of ultimately making a profit [most Lit Mags don’t pay and the ones who do, don’t pay very much].

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I’ve been published enough times to know that every now and then I write a story that people will pay to read.

All I have to do is work out which stories work best and gather them together.

You folks help me a great deal in that regard.

Your reaction, likes, comments help me to sift the ‘also-rans’ from the better stories.

So, thank you for your help.

Hopefully you have some fun during this process as well.

So, here’s to number 100. Raise your glass and toast to her round number. [Actually, since I first drafted this post, the count has gone to 101].

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20 thoughts on “100 Blue Flags.

  1. Cheers! That’s a fascinating reflection, and helpfully informative. (I too shall concentrate on those who have published things by me. It will save a lot of time, because it’s zilch! πŸ™‚ )

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Audiences are many (with a wide variety of taste), so I guess the reason why some stories sell and some don’t (despite being your own favourites) are pretty hard to figure out sometimes.

    Online, personally, I like the stories that are short and keep me guessing to the last line. My reading concentration is poor in ‘old’ age and intermittent ‘brain fog’.

    Hopefully, viewers will take the time to comment and tell you exactly why they liked that particular story – always helpful. But very disappointing when you put time into a post and don’t get a single comment. But if $$$ are the end goal, then concentrate on those publishers that pay you (although non-paying publishers at least reach some sort of audience of course). I find the more ‘tags’ I put at the end of a post, the more viewers. I find when I include images and/or photos, the first photo has to be eye-catching (whether it’s good or bad technically).

    ……and the title is another attention-grabber.

    Good Luck Terry (and brave of you to self-publish).

    Liked by 1 person

        • Hi Lori…….. I do that part of the world and I loved your story.
          Most Aussies see themselves as being defined by the bush, but the reality is most of us live in cities, and suburban ones at that. It’s only when you visit places like Hanging Rock that you can see where our national character comes from.
          The bush is unrelenting and unforgiving. You are tough and resourceful or you don’t survive.
          Hanging Rock is a special kind of spooky, and a very beautiful place…… but not in the summer.
          Triple digits [or 38C plus, in Aussie temps] is not unusual at that time of the year. I too dislike the heat, and that is why e live in the hills out side Melbourne [an average of 4degrees C cooler].
          You write very well………. I expect to see more stories?
          Terry

          Like

          • Oh Terry I am so glad u liked the story! I did very much hope you would understand it in a special way–as a local and as a fellow writer! And yes it does seem to me that a country like Australia would absolutely build character. So many ways to get hurt (as Bill Bryson hilariously described them)! There will be more stories, for sure, and next Halloween I may have to tell the one about the red-back spider in our rental car. Another true story, alas. πŸ˜‰

            Liked by 1 person

  3. Congratulations to you x 100!!! Your hard work pays off, Terryβ€”too bad for your bank account that it’s to *your readers* that the greatest payoffs come. I really do hope that the time is near for your breakthrough into actual paying work through this great stuff of your writing, but I confess that as someone who’s got the very same problem, I can only commiserate, not offer any stellar advice or connexions (let alone the financial ‘angel’ backing you deserve). Sigh. Art remains its own reward. That, and a sip of something cheering. πŸ˜‰

    So,
    Cheers!
    Kathryn

    Liked by 1 person

  4. See, I think hanging around is over rated. The beauty of self publishing is that you can take the initiative. It doesn’t mean it will work out, but if you keep at it then hard work, quality and quantity will start to tip things in your favour (and you have all of those in abundance). Short stories are notoriously hard to sell on Amazon, iBooks etc, but anthologies are not. You have such a big catalogue (said the vicar to the librarian) that you can afford to play around with a few strategies. Several free ones that lead into anthologies for example. Or serialised stories (Kindle Unlimited would eat those up). You get the CTA’s right and you should be able to funnel people across reams of your words.

    You need anything, just shout – formatting, beta reading, covers, other technical shenanigans, anything. Just shout.

    PS belated clink for the 101 πŸ˜€

    Liked by 1 person

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