Frustrated Novelists

We’re feeling very frustrated at the moment. You know the feeling – when you’ve sent off submissions and are waiting to hear back. Even though we have plenty to work on, it’s still disheartening to open your emails and find you have 0 in your inbox.  But still nothing extinguishes that burning desire to have something published. We know we’ve got a story coming out in July, but the frustration’s still there. Though on a plus side, we’re 2 submissions ahead of our Submission Mission and we’ve just finished redrafting our demon book, Legion of the Damned. We’d aimed to cut 20,000 words from it and actually cut 24,300 words. Saying that, the final word count is now 162,785. Yeah. Still too long.

We’re also desperately trying to cut down Scott the Zombie’s short story, Parliament of Monsters. We found out yesterday that there’s a zombie anthology that wants stories of 5000 words by Wednesday. Parliament of Monsters is 6000 so instead of marrying Red Bull in Tintern Abbey (long story), we’ve cutting like writers possessed.  At first we thought ‘it can’t be done’ then we thought ‘it’s a chance of publication. Like hell it can’t be done’. It doesn’t help with Scott telling us “stop stressing – you know I hate burst blood vessels in my brains”. Thanks, Scott, you’re a real help.

Operation: Wounded Knee

ok, it’s been a little while since our last post, apologies to those who actually read this 😀 Reason being Cat had a knee operation 10 days ago – it’s called debridement, microfracture condyte surgery. Bleurgh! In other words, they removed the cartilage she ripped off her knee 2 1/2 yrs ago (doing lunges during an exercise video) then drilled holes into her femur to make it bleed then the bloodclots formed a new cartilage. She’s been so spaced out on Tramodol she kept falling asleep within seconds, no matter what she was doing. So most of her work recently is probably really garbled and filled with zombie or Red Bull references. Nothing new there! 😀 So we’ve spent most of our time redrafting Legion of the Damned, our demon book, playing Golden Axe 1, 2 and 3 on the PS3 and hanging out with Ryan.

We’ve bought issues of Dark Moon Digest and Shock Totem to see what stuff they’re publishing as we’ve submitted to Shock Totem a few times and haven’t got anywhere so figured we’d better start reading some of the magazines we’re submitting to. We go about things all backwards, always have done. Really enjoyed some of the stories, especially the ones in Dark Moon Digest. We’ve submitted The Black Kiss, the anti Valentine’s story we published on here on Valentine’s Day to the Yeovil Literary prize, so we’ve already reached our May target for submissions and made up for March’s shameful count.

In other news, we started our new chair job last night for the Civic Society, where we set out chairs for meetings then put them away again. We do this for the WI and got head hunted by the Civic Society and whilst we were there, we got recruited for ANOTHER chair job – for funerals! We’re moving in to the big league 😀 Funerals will always be in business so we won’t have to worry about being made redundant. Now we’ll definitely have to buy the hearse we’ve always wanted. We have to make the right impression. Our flame spray painted Renault 4s just won’t look respectful. We can use this as another pro in convincing our mum a hearse is a good idea. Trips to the dump, camping holidays and just because we want one have so far failed but if we say we need it as a company car, we’re sure she’ll be swayed. Yes there’s no room in our drive, yes we already have 2 R4s and a hot pink Smart Car but we want a HEARSE! Seeing as we can’t afford a Citroen DS, Jag E Type, Austin 7, or cute little micro car. Scott the Zombie can ride in the back, like a celebrity. That should convince him not to eat us for a while. We don’t trust the way he keeps looking at Cat then at her crutches and licking his lips :s

Swear Box

Hey moreish brains, it’s Scott here with bad news, I’m afraid. My short story, Parliament of Monsters was rejected 😦 Apparently the editor enjoyed it but didn’t feel the ending engaged him enough to take it to the next round. As I’m sure you’ll agree, this is entirely my Necromancers’ fault 😀 Boy they’re lucky I can’t get someone else to write my story for me. It’s hard finding people willing to not only sit down and talk to a zombie, but to agree to write a novel about him. Personally I think they’re a couple of patients short of an asylum, but you’ve got to work with the raw materials you have.

The extract I had published in the March issue of Writing Magazine has also taken a bit of criticism because there’s a swear word in the opening line. :O A swear word? In today’s Victorian society? How scandalous! Apparently, the outraged writer, upon seeing a swear word would refuse to read any more and seeing as this swear word was in the opening line, that’s my book fu- screwed. Ok, the opening line was spoken by Tyler, not me. I can’t help it if Tyler has a potty mouth. I’ve tried scrubbing his tongue with soap but he bit me and foamed at the mouth like some rabid beast. I was forced to lock myself in my freezer until it was safe to come out. I think it’s a little unfair to refuse to read a book because it has a swear word in it. You hear people swearing, are you going to say “I’m not going to finish this conversation because you said a naughty word”? No. Are you going to switch off your favourite TV show because one of the characters dropped the f-bomb? (Let’s get this straight – Tyler did not drop the f-bomb) I hope not. But then I guess this person only watches cosy family dramas that are about as exciting as breathing. But as my Necromancers remind me, so what if he won’t read the rest of my story? I got another mention in the magazine = free publicity 🙂 This was the line that caused so much offence – “Oh shit. You ate Alicia.” I love the way Tyler swearing caused this writer more offence than me snacking on my colleague in the disused corridor of De’Ath’s supermarket.

Scott x

Deadlines

Just checked our calendar for May’s deadlines. Wow. There’re a hell of a lot of them. The British Fantasy Society, Aeon Press & the Yeovil Literary Prize all at the end of the month. The Yeovil prize has 3 categories – poetry, short stories & novels. Luckily with the spate of rejections we’ve had, we’ve got stories to spare. We’ve already sent two stories to Aeon Press’ Box of Delights anthology – one is Parliament of Monsters, the short story where Scott the Zombie was born & the other is The Ferryman, which just reached the finals of The New Writer competition. It didn’t win, but at least they liked it. We were thinking of sending Majesty of Darkness, Scott the Zombie & maybe Soul Asylum to the novel section of the Yeovil prize. At least the amount of deadlines will help us compensate for only sending 1 piece of work off in March, instead of our target of 4.