So yeah, it's been a pretty slow start to the new year as far as writing goes. General lack of motivation seems to be the main issue, with no motivation to do anything about the lack of motivation, either. But, I know the rule: if you want to write, all you can do is sit down to write. So I won't complain or make excuses.
However, there have been a few promising developments shining a light on the otherwise dim outlook. After a final review and edit, "Exequies" was sent to a science fiction magazine, in the hopes that it will be published. If it doesn't get accepted at that magazine, I'll continue down my list and submit it elsewhere. I hope to hear back one way or another within a couple weeks about it.
On another front, I gave the first three chapters of The Serenity Solution to my academic adviser at my university. He's an English professor, an avid reader of science fiction, and he teaches a summer science fiction class at the university. The problem, I told him, was that the original version of the story was just too long. You'll remember I was bemoaning the fact that it had been completed at 179,000 words, when the industry standard seemed to call for between 80,000 to 100,000 words. As you'll remember, I started rewriting the book, but I'm just not feeling it. The characters seem more lifeless, the settings feel rushed, and while the plot works on a technical level, I'm satisfied with how it lives up to the original concept. Thus, I'll be giving him the original version in installments, with the hope that I can get some professional critiquing on what parts of the story can stay and what parts absolutely need to go or be reworked. My problem right now is lack of objectivity. And since I can't be objective and don't really have any clear idea of what I need to do... you guessed it, motivation becomes an issue. Hopefully this will solve that.
In the meantime, I think I'm going to tinker around with some other short story ideas and see if something falls together as well as "Exequies" did. If I make any progress on anything, you'll hear about it here first. ;)