This week I managed to clean up a manuscript and send it out. It was good to get it done. And then I just happened to find a story at a professional market that had a similar setting. I was initially terribly annoyed because in the competitive world of speculative fiction, writing a story that could even remotely considered derivative of already published story is about the same as two folks showing up at the Ascot Opening Day in the same hat.
After swearing (the house was empty), I consigned myself to the platitudes: great minds think alike, and anyone who thinks they're original has never studied history.
Next week's manuscript is the fun manuscript with the post-read plot-disintegration. It's a fun goofy read with mistaken identity. I need to clean up the more confusing aspects of it -- in other words, figure out how to let the reader know who is who without tipping the characters off or making them seem stupid.
The third manuscript I've been working on is for the Wordos' Halloween Shorts Reading. Like many of the short stories I've been writing lately, the story wants to explode into a novel and I've got a mangled mess of plot, vignettes, dialog, and character sketches.
4000 words worth. That's 3000 words too many. With no actual story. Yet.
I'm sure that's a metaphor for something....