First things first: Big News. I made my first SFWA-qualifying pro-sale to Baen’s Universe!!! What does this mean? Essentially, in order to be SFWA-qualifying, the sale has to be at the professional pay-grade (5 cents per word) or higher and the market has to be an established and respected one in continuous operation for at least a year. SFWA may be rocked by controversy (which I might post on at some point when I have a clue what I’m talking about), but I think its standards are still industry standards for when one can consider oneself to be a professional level speculative fiction writer. 1/3 of the way there, baby!
Brief plug: Baen’s Universe, which I’ve discussed before, routinely publishes fiction from all the best authors in the field, but they’ve still gone out of their way to open up to new authors, reserving two to three slots an issue for those who have yet to break onto the pro scene. In all honesty, whether it's reasonable or not, it can be incredibly difficult to make a pro-sale if you don’t have one already. Baen’s has really made an effort to overcome this, and I am now eternally in their debt. I recommend that everyone go buy a subscription-- you won’t be disappointed. My piece, “Spamdemonium” will be out (tentatively) in the June ’08 edition. Have no fear, you will be informed repeatedly up until you have no choice but to get the issue just to quiet the incessant voices in your own skull. Also, I will use voodoo.
And a short update on the New Plan. It came down to the wire (no surprises there), but I have been successful: One story completed for the month of September (on the 30th, to be exact). The tentative title is “Aftermath,” but that will almost certainly change as it in no way encapsulates the finished (rough-finished) product. I now throw myself to the editing gods (not to be confused with the cruel and uncaring slush god), and plead that in their mercy they somehow make this crap sellable.
So that’s the update. Actual substantive post to follow soon, where I will attempt to reveal the secrets of horror, which I do not know. It promises to be an intellectual treatise exploring the depths of the human psyche and what drives us to seek out that which we fear the most. But in reality I will probably just talk about zombies.