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July 6th, 2009. That’s the date I discovered Crossed Genres. I know this because that’s the same date I submitted a story to them, and withdrew it the following day. See, I was still a very wet behind the ears writer and I was so excited about their current genre to notice that it was the previous month’s genre. Still, I had the good sense to email Bart and Kay the next day to let them know about my mistake but from that day forward I was a fan.

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We went to Toronto last week. Sort of a mini-vacation. We planned the trip around a few events and winged the rest. We didn’t realize the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) was happening, which sort of made finding last minute hotel rooms an adventure. We headed up Sunday, with an all too brief stopover along the way to meet up with twitter pal SheikYurbouti, followed by a mad rush to make it downtown in time for the first of our first of three Pearl Jam concerts.

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The Crimson Pact 2, which includes my flash fiction “History of the Flesh“, is now available from Amazon.com, Barnes & Noble, and probably other places that sell ebooks. Five bucks for twenty-eight stories and over 500 pages worth of fiction is a steal. There’s even a Youtube channel filled with book trailers if you need convincing. This little story is set in the same world as the novel I’m working and I’m very happy to see it in print, so to speak.

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August, blessedly, is over. Besides the heat, humidity, and histamine that’s kept me inside for most of the month, I shouldn’t complain too much. I watched my friends get married via Google Handout. The car broke down, requiring a tow and new battery. I watched Life on Mars (the UK version) and Andrea and I finally caught up on Fringe. Life on Mars — what a fabulous idea. Now that I’ve seen both the US and original UK versions I feel like I should say something about it.

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Can you believe I managed to blog three whole days in a row last week two weeks ago? Yeah. Apparently I’m running in low power mode right now. New meds, a heavy work schedule, and two short story deadlines. Oh, and I’m outlining NOVEL. I’ve got around twenty unfinished short stories in inventory. My plan is to revise a short story every month or so while drafting novel. I don’t plan to draft any new short stories until I’ve finished this novel draft, unless something new like Shanghai Steam comes along or a specific invite comes along that catches my interest.

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Broken Time Blues: Fantastic Tales in the Roaring ’20s, or as some of you folks may remember it from it’s twitter hashtag, #20spec, is now available for sale on Amazon. From the publisher’s description: No blind tigers or poisonous coffin varnish here! Broken Time Blues is a classy establishment, see? The cat’s meow. So toss on your glad rags and get a wiggle on! Make sure no one’s following you, then take a right down the alley and knock three times on the brown door.

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I sent a submission to a market whose name I will not reveal on July 15th. Acknowledgement was received on July 17th, which I’ve included below, modified only to anonymize the publisher. There are enough mistakes contained in this experience that I think it’s worth examining, both for writers, editors, and small press publishers. Thank you for your submission. I expect to begin story review for Name Withheld in late July/early August and you should hear from me no later than September 15th.

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I need to post a full recap of my Clarion write-a-thon efforts and a thank you to the donors. In the meantime, a little bit about accountability. I’ve been bad about writing consistently lately (blogging seems to be a chronic problem). I’d write sporadically, finishing stories here and there, revising and evening submitting a few of them with some success. Mostly, though, I’ve been draft stories and that’s it. I still have some sitting in my moleskines waiting to be typed up.

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I’ve survived day two of walking myself into a non-round shape. It’s not an easy task. Fibromyalgia, my version of it, includes bouts of fatigue. I tried doing something as simple as lunges as part of my friend Sandra’s virtual bootcamp; twenty minutes of that put me into a fatigue crash that had me sleeping 36 out of the next 48 hours and, frankly, weeks of depression just thinking about that failure.

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The inches-thick stack of paper greeting us on Tuesday only needed one thing: signatures. With today’s batch of packages to Fedex, my application for immigration to Canada is on its way north, where it will sit in processing for the next nine or ten months. Around April or May next year, I will start frantically refreshing the status page to see if it changes from ‘in process’ to ‘approved’ and we wait for the final paperwork to come in the mail.

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