Well, 2017 has been an interesting year as a writer.
I’ve learned a lot, and some of the lessons have been unpleasant ones. But I think the net effect has been positive. I know more about my craft and my personal strengths than I did last year at this time.
My plans for 2018 can be summed up in two words; “Short Fiction”.
This isn’t to say that I absolutely refuse to consider a novel length project–it could happen. I might find myself inspired to finish Bad Dreams & Broken Hearts, if I can figure out where I went wrong with it. Or maybe I’ll go back to The Bullet From Tomorrow or Tsarina, or A World Edgewise. Or something new might suggest itself.
But I intend to focus on short fiction, primarily because I feel that short fiction is the medium that lends itself best to innovation, and innovation is what I do best. It also, in my opinion, is what the moribund genre we call “Science Fiction/Fantasy” needs most right now.
Every major advance in genre fiction–the Pulps, Hard SF, New Wave, Cyberpunk–has been driven by short fiction. Authors were able to try out new concepts and readers were able to experience them with minimal investment on both sides. Writers were free to experiment.
Those experiments that worked were used in novels and the novels grew into the backbone of a new generation of fiction. Then what was once new and exotic solidified over time into conventions. “Wow, what am I reading?” turns into “Wait, have I read this one before?”
Fortunately, there is a growing market for short fiction. I have several stories in upcoming collections for 2018 already, and am planning on releasing a collection of my previously published stories in the spring.
So that’s what I’m doing. How about you?