So at the beginning of the year, I gave myself the challenge of 40 short story submissions. This was a modification on a challenge that I’d heard of where one tries for 40 short story rejections in a year*, but I’d felt that that still relied too much on external factors that I can’t control. My success in my own personal challenge would still be dependent on someone else.
Some markets don’t send rejections letters (it’s rarer than it is with agents, but it happens). Some markets are notorious for slow turnarounds (I’ve got something out right now that’s at 133 days pending; someone else who’d submitted long before me just got a rejection notice at almost 300 days). And sometimes, sometimes, instead of a rejection, you get an acceptance.
Which is a lovely reason not to have a rejection, by the way.
Better, say I, to count submissions. I can control how many submissions I send out. It’s a quantifiable number that’s entirely dependent on my own agency.
Long story short, I accomplished my personal challenge! Woo! As I’m done early, I’m giving myself the stretch-goal of another 10 by December (grand total, 50 submissions in 2019). And, should I hit that, ten more.**
For 2020, I’ll aim for 40 again, with stretch goals.
I also made myself an achievement badge. For bragging. (And because I found an Xbox achievement generator.)