February has been a good month, I think:
- I had three new stories out in one form or another, bizarrely all on the same day: New Boy on the Dark River Press site; Haunted in 100 Horrors; and He in Penny Dreadnought: The Lone And Level Sands.
- I've submitted quite a few stories to magazines and anthologies and had one acceptance so far.
- I've written two new stories, and am currently struggling with a third that might be called The Man The Dogs Hated. Despite its short length I'm having a lot of trouble with this one.
- I got £90 of book tokens from work and was like a kid in a candy-shop for a good few hours in the local Waterstones.
- Sales of both The Other Room and The Shelter were really good; I presume this is still the after-effect of so many e-readers being sold at Christmas, but during the odd optimistic moment I like to think it's because I'm actually an okay writer.
- I won a copy of The Little Stranger by Sarah Waters.
So yes, not a bad month, all told. As to what comes next, I'm not sure. I have enough stories that I think are good enough to self-publish another collection straight away, if I wanted to. And given that sales of my other self-published books seem to be on an upwards path an the moment, the temptation to do this quickly is quite strong.
But then I also worry that I need to be thinking long term, and getting as many stories out to as many different markets as possible, in order to build an audience the old-fashioned, slower way. And maybe I should be thinking of trying to get a second collection out via an independent press anyway, rather than all under my own, somewhat limited, steam. I'm honestly not sure at the moment.
But to end on a less self-absorbed, boring note, here's a song from the new Tindersticks album: