05 March, 2012


Four short story rejections and counting.

Nine months ago, when I started writing seriously, I had this vision that I would write my novel straight through, and then self-publish it. I figured I'd be done by the end of the year.

I was wrong. But I did learn a great many things along the way, including a lot about the worlds of e-publishing and self-publishing, and I ended up becoming motivated to start self-(e-)publishing short stories as a way to begin building a name for myself. It wasn't something I could have predicted, but it turns out to be an approach that, I think, works well for me.

It is, in fact, I think an ideal example of the four stages of competence. At first, I thought, "I'll write a novel! And it'll be great!" Not realizing, of course, that I had never written a novel before, and that there are a number of skills involved in it beyond the simple ability to put one word after another. This was the unconscious incompetence phase: I didn't recognize that I didn't know what I was doing.

I think now I'm in the conscious incompetence phase. I know that I don't know what I'm doing. And I'm doing my best to keep at it, hoping that some day I'll actually be reasonably good at this. That'll be the conscious competence phase, of course, followed, some day (I hope!) by the unconscious competence phase, where I am a master author and the world is my oyster. (Actually, I hate oysters. Why can't the world be my shrimp tempura roll?)

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