Hey, Story a Day is doing a contest! I read the rules, and the entries have to be under 2500 words. I looked at all the stories I wrote during May. Only one of them (not counting the poems, because contest entries have to be prose) is under 2500 words. So after I rewrote the story I wanted to pass out to my writers’ group for critique (the one I wrote on May 4th: it started out just over 4400 words and came to just over 4700 words after rewrite) I rewrote my story from May 11th. Luckily, it’s still under 2500 words now that I’ve rewritten it. I’m just waiting for the submission form to become available. . . .
I’m now rewriting the story I wrote on May 7th. I knew when I finished it that the end was hurried, because the story was already over 4,000 words long. So now I’m doing a bit of necessary research, and hope it doesn’t get too long as I rewrite. It’s already 4,087 words (WordPerfect count), so I have a bit of space, but I know stories under 5,000 words are easiest to sell. I’ll let it be longer if it needs to be, but then I’ll use the 10% Solution on it. The 10% Solution is an excellent book on editing and revision written by Ken Rand and available from Fairwood Press. It gives very good ways of going through a “finished” manuscript and tightening it up, giving it more action and vividness, and fixing really clunky sections. I would recommend it to any serious writer (and, in fact, I already have–I wrote an article about it for the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America’s Bulletin a few years ago).