Kindness in Words Both In and Out | Weekend Wishes

🌎 🌍 Will you accept this challenge? 🌎 🌍

Toward the end of 2018, I sat and considered some of the feedback I’d received over the year both internal (from talking to myself) and external.

I have specific goals for my writing, but I have specific personal goals as well. One is to improve the way I communicate with others when things go wrong.

Falling Flat

My car had a flat tire a while back. The air cap was missing. I ended up missing a very important doctors appointment. It ended up throwing off my plans for the rest of the day and bleeding into the next.

I called my husband and was fuming. He calmed me and said … there had been a flat tire. He took it to a tire shop and had them patch it. They refilled the tire and must have forgotten to put a cap on. It had been slowly leaking since then, and with cold weather had compressed enough to reduce the air pressure.

Even if it had been his fault, I shouldn’t have expressed my anger that way. I said things that I regret.

I sat and read about conflict resolution and how to stop saying things that I regret.

Can’t Stuff It Back In

Sometimes I say things that I regret. I’m tired. We had upsetting news, and I felt exhausted and hopeless. It doesn’t excuse me. It’s just an explanation. When I’m physically having a rough time, or under too much stress, I’m most likely to reach that tipping point. I react, it’s a nuclear reaction, and I can’t stuff what I said back in my mouth. I’ve given life to frogs and malice like a cursed princess instead of jewels and flowers following me wherever I go.

Reading about conflict resolution, gentle parenting, and being a friend to myself has really helped me. I want to keep putting into practice those new tools I have learned.

When I find myself getting frustrated, it’s often mixed with a panicky feeling because something else is also wrong – I need rest, or food, or less stimuli. Less stimuli for me can come in the form of a clean house. If I need to clean, then I’m constantly noticing dirt or clutter and adding to a never ending to-do list.

Introspection can be difficult. It’s my observation that most of us are a little unreliable when it comes to how we perceive ourselves versus actuality.

Outward Kindness

Someone recently commented that they are “nice” to strangers but reserve kindness only for their close friends and family. I didn’t engage with them. They have the right to their approach to life.

I don’t understand this thinking. I strive to be kind to everyone I meet. Sometimes I fail, but I want to be good for goodness’ sake, not just to those who are close to me.

Image description: silhouette of an eclipse of the planet with the quotation: “The world is my country. All mankind are my brethren and to do good is my religion.” - Thomas Paine

Kindness is often both priceless and free.


My challenge to myself this year is to be kinder in my words both in and out – in how I speak to myself, and everyone with whom I come in contact.

My challenge is to listen to understand, not to reply, and to consider the people around me, and what they need to hear versus what I want to say.

Do you have any personal challenges this year you’d like to share?

50 Publications Accepting Sci-Fi/Fantasy Submissions – Winter 2019

Winter 2019 Markets for Sci-Fi and Fantasy Short Fiction

Dear Writers,

In Fall 2019 I made a list of 26 magazines accepting Sci-Fi and/or Fantasy submissions. This is the updated list for Winter 2019 – there are some removals due to closing, hiatus, or reading period limitations. Many additions have been added – I’ve really scoured the web this time.

I’ve broken this into three groups:

SFWA Qualifying Markets
Qualifying Rates but Not Approved SFWA Venues
Non-SFWA Markets

New to magazine submissions? Then this link will take you to something I previously wrote – What the ****? Things Beginners Might Want to Know about Magazine Submissions.

Continue reading “50 Publications Accepting Sci-Fi/Fantasy Submissions – Winter 2019”

Going the Distance – Thoughts After NaNoWriMo

🏃‍♀️On pacing, burnout, and progress 🏃🏃‍♀️

Writing a novel takes time – even if you’re a pantser (a NaNoWriMo term meaning someone who writes by the seat of their pants), it is still a process: drafting, developmental edits, line edits, and that’s not even considering critiques and re-reading it yourself.

Athlete’s feet over asphalt.

Today I want to talk to you about pacing, burnout, and progress.

Continue reading “Going the Distance – Thoughts After NaNoWriMo”

5 Reasons I’m Attempting NaNoWriMo This Year

I know what I said before …

Long time readers may remember my lamentations about National Novel Writing Month (aka NaNoWriMo).

I know what I said:

The “at this rate you’ll finish your novel on x date” ticker in NaNoWriMo is stressful for me.  It causes undue stress…

That was a few years ago. It’s been long enough that I’ve been able to forget some of the stress.

This year I’ve succumbed to the madness. Here are my thoughts on why I’m attempting it this year:

Continue reading “5 Reasons I’m Attempting NaNoWriMo This Year”

7 Things I Wish I’d Known about Beta-Reading

7️⃣Potatoes, Peaches, and Rivers. Oh, my! 7️⃣

Earlier I mentioned that I am reviewing others’ books as an attempt to practice better literary citizenship, being a better member of the #WritingCommunity. Reviewing self-published books isn’t the only way I can or should contribute as a literary citizen.

Woman reading off an e-reader. Today’s topics range from unpublished writers to debut to NY Times journalists to bestsellers – I’m sharing with you my thoughts, and their quotes in regards to literary citizenship, critiquing, and beta-reading. [If I mentioned you and for some reason you prefer not to be included, please let me know.]

The 7 points I cover would have helped me provide better critiques and better receive feedback when I was starting to read. Continue reading “7 Things I Wish I’d Known about Beta-Reading”

Words Matter: Unfortunate Edition

Words matter! Say what you mean.

There’s a word I hate hearing. It’s a word that others often use to explain away poor behavior, harsh company policies, or an unlikable decision.

A pair of dice displaying sixes.

This word has been twisted from the primary meaning. This word makes me cringe every time I hear or read it. It instantly makes it more difficult for me to accept what is being communicated to me.

Continue reading “Words Matter: Unfortunate Edition”

26 Magazines Accepting Sci-Fi/Fantasy Submissions

Fall 2019 Markets for Sci-Fi and Fantasy Short Fiction

Dear Writers,
If you’re in the quest for publication, like I am, then knowing where to submit your short stories may be daunting.

Steaming coffee cup next to a stack of newspapers. Text : 26 Magazines Accepting Sci-fi/Fantasy Submissions

Many of the periodicals listed by the SFWA are closed to submissions for the foreseeable future, and many of the smaller non-qualifying markets I saw on other guides were also closed (some permanently and others temporarily).

To share my efforts with you, here are 26 magazines accepting submissions as of September 2019 or in the near future, with notes about them – especially response time.

Since so many markets for short fiction don’t allow simultaneous submissions, response time can be important to me for prioritizing whom I should query next.
If you have a different approach for prioritizing, please let me know. I’d love to hear it.

I’ve broken this into three groups:

SFWA Qualifying Markets
Qualifying Rates but Not Approved SFWA Venues
Non-SFWA Markets

Also, I have two post scripts on Yes, I was Rejected and What the ****? Things Beginners Might Want to Know about Magazine Submissions

Continue reading “26 Magazines Accepting Sci-Fi/Fantasy Submissions”

You & I Are Gonna Live Forever | Weekend Wishes

🌏 “We see things they’ll never see….” 🌎

A while back I had the privilege of listening to author and investigative journalist Cecil Bothwell’s talk called “Mousetrap Earth”.

In it, he spoke of mortality. Something he said made me think of the Oasis song “Live Forever”. Since I’m going to not one but two funerals this week, death has been on my mind.

This will be a selection of prose, poetry, and a song on mortality (or immortality) and my thoughts. For the longer pieces I am including only excerpts and links.

Continue reading “You & I Are Gonna Live Forever | Weekend Wishes”

The King of Ash & Bone Review

My Thoughts on This Desperate Mission to Save What’s Left of The World

Legends sometimes have roots in reality, a grain of salt that’s too much to bear but too chilling to be forgotten. As society crumbles around Mackenzie, she trusts a stranger. The fellow survivor is a means to the end of reuniting with her brother. As tensions run high, she’s plunged into a nightmare beyond her imagining. She has information about the invading species, but can she get it to the army in time?

Continue reading “The King of Ash & Bone Review”

Brevity & Inevitability: “Remember You Will Die”

‼️ What if a hospital picks someone to make decisions for you?

In The Austere Academy volume of A Series of Unfortunate Events, the Latin phrase “Momento Mori” is inscribed over the gates of Prufrock Preparatory School.

The phrase means, “remember you will die”. It seems morbid for a children’s school. I know, it’s a downer especially for a Monday, but it felt important to bring up because of something that happened recently to me. Continue reading “Brevity & Inevitability: “Remember You Will Die””