This week was a big one for me, because for the first time ever, my fiction appeared in print. The "No Fun Fiction" feature in this month's Discorder Magazine is written by yours truly, and I'm not going to lie, it's a pretty great feeling.
It is, however, not the end goal.
Those who know me will know that it's one of my goals this year to get a book deal. At the end of 2016, I completed my first book and approached agents for representation. What I got back was rejections, so I'm currently revisiting my manuscript and making some major changes to make it a stronger piece of work. I'm not going to lie - it's much slower going than writing the first draft, when the words spilled out in every free moment and I finished the book in two months. Everything is a bit more measured, more careful this time - I've got the skeleton to work with, and I'm being delicate with the flesh I add to those bones.
Even with a perfect manuscript, getting published is hard, so one of my aims this year was to get my name out there and cut my fiction teeth in magazines, literary journals and contests (and this blog) with shorter pieces. This will give me a solid portfolio, and hopefully make me more of a safe bet for agents.
January involved a lot of work on this blog redesign, and a whole lot of writing pieces to submit to publications I respect and admire. The piece in Discorder is the first result of all of that hard work, and I couldn't be happier with how it turned out.
It's the first step towards what has been my goal for pretty much my whole life. In the next couple of months, there will hopefully be a few more exciting developments, each one creating one more stepping stone. Someone once told me to take small steps, but take them everyday, and that's the key philosophy I'm living by. But today, I'm happy to hold my work in my hands and take a breath.