Wednesday, July 30, 2014


I received my 25th acceptance of the year this morning. An Australian women's magazine accepted a short romance I wrote back in 2009.

Monday, July 28, 2014

Published 2x

My story "Hot for the Teacher" appears in the September True Confessions, and my story "Resisting Temptation" appears in the September True Story.

Sunday, July 27, 2014


I received my 24th acceptance of the year this morning while I was still at ArmadilloCon. Announcing a sale that very morning while introducing myself at an 11 a.m. panel was kinda cool. This one's for a confession.

Friday, July 25, 2014


I received my 23rd acceptance of the year today. This one's for a bit of hardboiled crime fiction.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014


Lucy at Hearts on Fire reviews Active Duty and has this to say about my contribution to the anthology:
"Soaring – Michael Bracken Rated 4.5 Probably my favorite of the anthology and one of the sweetest. Wedding! This one is sweet and light. I loved that it begins with their wedding, gives insight on their courtship (a bookstore where he’s reading gay mystery anthology, awesome!) and then ends with their honeymoon. It was lovely."
Read the entire review here.

Sunday, July 20, 2014


I received my 22nd acceptance of the year. This one's a romance.

Saturday, July 19, 2014


I received my 21st acceptance of the year this evening, this time for a confession.

Convention appearance

I’ll be at ArmadilloCon in Austin, Texas, this weekend (July 25-27), participating in three panels about writing:

Sa1000E Watch Out for that Plothole!
Sat 10:00 AM-11:00 AM
Our panelists give you tips and advice on fixing the plotholes in your works.

Sa1400F Before You Edit
Sat 2:00 PM-3:00 PM
This is a discussion of minor edits you can make before you really dig in. Find/Replace is your friend.

Su1100F Overhauling a Character
Sun 11:00 AM-Noon
Now that you have written a book, go back and rewrite your main character.

If you’re there, say howdy.

For more info about the convention, visit

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Guest post

My guest post at The Novel Approach, "How 'Soaring' Took Off," discusses how I came to write "Soaring" for Active Duty and includes an except from the beginning of the story.

If you leave a reply to my guest post, you will be entered into a drawing to win a copy of Active Duty.


Brandilyn reviews Active Duty at Prism Book Alliance and has this to say about "Soaring," my contribution to the anthology:
"Soaring is the story of a wedding made possible because of the repeal of DADT. An airman and his banker lover meet under the restrictions of DADT and have to find a way to make their relationship work. We start and end on the wedding day and look at the beginnings of the relationship in between. It was an interesting and sweet tale."
 Read the entire review here.

Tuesday, July 08, 2014


I finished and submitted my thirty-fifth short story of the year this evening. This one's a 5,400-word bit of crime fiction.

Monday, July 07, 2014

Upcoming radio interview

At 1 p.m. Eastern time (noon Central time, etc.) Thursday, July 31, I'll be interviewed by Jean Maurie and Maggie Lukowski during their Personal Empowerment program on Attune Magazine Radio. I'll be discussing my writing career with an emphasis on writing confessions. Learn more, and learn how you can hear the program, at

Friday, July 04, 2014


I finished and submitted my thirty-fourth story of the year this afternoon. This one's a 3,600-word confession.


Kristy at 3 Chicks After Dark reviewed Active Duty and had this to say about "Soaring," my contribution to the anthology:
Captain Hunter and Scott began their relationship when it was not safe for Captain Hunter to be out and proud. His career was on the line and he wasn’t willing to give it up so close to retirement. After a stolen weekend together they knew they had something special. Captain Hunter just couldn’t take the chance and walks away. The distance doesn’t last long and finally they both agree to hide their love and be very discreet. The short story is their wedding day! They didn’t waste any time tying the knot and declaring their love once they could with the repeal of DADT! The end is so sweet it will leave you verklempt! Husband, my husband?!
Read the entire review here.

Thursday, July 03, 2014


I received my 20th acceptance of the year today, for one of the stories I mentioned in yesterday's post.

Wednesday, July 02, 2014

Like a virgin

"Submit it and forget it" was one of the best pieces of advice I received as a beginning writer, and, though it was difficult to do in the beginning when I only had a handful of manuscripts floating around, it became easier as time went on. When I had dozens of manuscripts under submission I could barely remember them all and, later, when I improved both my writing skill and my marketing abilities, I didn't fret much because nearly everything sold on first or second submission.

For the past several years I have been writing most of my short stories on assignment, on invitation, or for markets where I've already placed multiple stories. Life has been good.

On the other hand, it had been a long time since I wrote anything just for me or that really stretched my abilities in some way. At the beginning of the year, I decided to change that.

In an earlier post, I described how I've been triple-tracking my writing. During the first writing session of the day, I write stories for a pair of magazines that have published one or more of my stories each month for a bloody long time. During my second writing session of the day, I write stories in a genre where I've had long-term success, and much of what I write is sent to a handful of anthology editors who have each published several of my stories.  During my third writing session of the day I work on stretch-stories or just-for-me-stories.

One unexpected outcome from this is that I've created a few stories for markets to which I've never previously sold and a few stories for which I had no specific market in mind during the writing. So, like a beginning writer, I'm following the time-tested, time-proven theory of submitting to the best market and working my way down until I receive an acceptance or run out of places to submit.

An even more unexpected outcome is that, despite having more than three-dozen manuscripts under submission, I am acutely aware of only a few. I find myself unable to "submit and forget" them, which causes this:

The editor of one anthology, an editor to whom I had never previously submitted, mentioned in her blog that she had made decisions on all submissions and would be notifying writers this week. It's Wednesday already and I haven't heard a thing. Is that good news or bad?

A fellow writer mentioned in a Yahoo group that she had received a polite rejection from the top magazine in that genre after only three weeks. My story's been there five weeks already. Is that good news or bad?

I'm nervous and tingly all over, just as I was back in the day when I was sending out my first few manuscripts.

It's nice to know that I'm not really the jaded old writer I thought I had become and that I can still feel like a virgin writer submitting for the very first time.