2018: Back from hiatus – Back to the grind

Back from holiday, it is time to get serious for 2018.

Writing-wise, I feel it was a good year. Though, the number of individual works published was low this year, I did manage to publish my first book, Medusa (you can see it here: http://www.politics-prose.com/book/978162429127 ) and a second book –Love Departing–was a finalist in Local Gems Press’ NaPoWriMo contest and will be out in 2018. A third book, “Weathered Fragments,” should be out by April 2018.

What will 2018 bring? I have made my goals for 2018. If you are serious about writing, you know you have to make these tangible goals. Last year, I said I wanted two books published, and I am proud to say, I have done it. However, it all started with a goal.

Got yours? Join me!

Writing highlights for 2017:

Medusa, The Lost Daughter – first poetry collection published, based on the Medusa myth
Love Departing – poetry chapbook – finalist for NaPoWriMo contest
Weathered Fragments – poetry collection –  due out by April 2018
9 individual poems published – this is less than half of the previous year’s output, but this year I focused on publishing my first collection.

Goals for 2018:
*Focus on fiction. I would like to complete the draft to my incomplete novel (tentatively titled) The Fleeting Lights. Ready it for publication.
*Finish Medusa part 2. I have 3 parts planned in that poetry collection.
*Publish 10 individual pieces, whether they are fiction, nonfiction or poetry.
*Create 30 new poems over the year. Start one large prose project.

Sounds like a lot, but I do believe it is feasible.

Wish me luck! Have goals you are setting? Best of luck to you, too, in 2018!

Have a wonderfully productive year!


Happy New Year

Thank you for reading this blog. Your support and correspondence over the year (and beyond!) means a lot to me. This blog has grown a lot since I started it over a year ago, with many, many works added to it. I hope to continue to add more content over the next year to make it an even better experience for you, the reader.

Even after being fortunate enough to have published about 60 works (thank you, dear editors and journals!), I still feel like a new writer at times, and often wonder how other writers go about writing and submitting their works for publications.  Enter Trish Hopkinson’s New Year post about her blog and submission totals for the year. Reading her stats, I am in awe of her blog stats (it is an awesome blog, check it out here, if you haven’t already!) and of her submission stats too, so I decided to look at my own.

Using Duotrope, I looked up my stats for 2016. I write mostly poetry, though, I also write and publish fiction and nonfiction occasionally.

In 2016, I submitted 197 works for publication. These are Duotrope stats.

187 were poetry –this does not include my Alaska Women Speak submissions, of which I had 9 poems published. Duotrope does not list them, so they are not included in the raw numbers.

7 nonfiction – This number leaves out 1 AWS submission as well that was published.

3 fiction – This number, again, leaves out 1 AWS submission that was published.

Overall, I had a 14% acceptance ratio, without the AWS submissions counted. Poetry acceptance was 13.1, fiction was 100% (OK, believe it or not, I just got lucky here for this year, for one of these pieces was rejected in 2015, which doesn’t count this year). Nonfiction acceptance was 16.7%.

In 2017, I plan to submit to more tougher markets (yeah, I know, isn’t it hard enough to get published without MORE rejection!), so my acceptance rate will probably decrease quite a bit next year.

38 works were accepted for publication in 2016, with 3 to be published in 2017.

Not bad, definitely, but as a writer I always strive for more challenges.

Next up are goals for 2017, which I have not articulated yet.

Writers out there, how was 2016 for you?  Please post and share!








Flash Fiction/ Down in the Dirt Issue

Hey everyone!  The new July/August 2016 issue of Down in the Dirt is v138, titled “Suicidal Birds“!  It contains my flash fiction story “The Devil and the White Room.”  Check it out at the web site here (http://scars.tv/cgi-bin/writers.pl?JENNIFERL.SMITH) or in print (https://www.createspace.com/6334551).


Cirque: The Afghan

Hi Everyone!

I am pleased to announce that Cirque will publish my short story “The Afghan” in its summer solstice issue, due out this month.  More details when the issue goes live.

Not familiar with Cirque, please visit them.  They publish the best literature of the Northern Pacific Rim region.  http://www.cirquejournal.com

Alaska Women Speak: The Call

Hi Everyone!

Just wanted to post that Alaska Women Speak has accepted my fiction story “The Call” for their summer issue.  Check them out and see more work from some great Alaskan writers.  More details when they go to print!


The Devil and the White Room

My story “The Devil and the White Room” is up at Down in the Dirt.  The print version will come out in August, but you can read the web version here.  Click on my name, Jennifer L. Smith.  This story, although fictional, draws on my real estate selling days.  It is a story that proves the old saying “the truth is stranger than fiction.”  Enjoy!

Down in the Dirt Acceptance

I am pleased to announce that my short story “The Devil and the White Room” has been accepted for publication by Down in the Dirt for its July/Aug 2016 issue.  This is a flash fiction piece I wrote for a horror-themed submissions call.  Glad to see it made its way to a home.  Will post more details when it goes up on the site!

Throwback Thursday: How to Eat a Bagel

Last post of the day, seriously.  When do I make all of these posts, lol.

This one was published by 50-Word Stories back in September.  Enjoy!

And, Happy Holidays, everyone!

How to Eat a Bagel

Eat like this, mama demands, nibbling the bagel like a caged gerbil with a toilet paper roll.

The boy giggles, taking his like a harmonica, raises it like a singer reaches for that final high note. Cream cheese squirts out for the audience’s enjoyment.

She rubs her expectant belly. “Kids.”