I've got about half a dozen stories in progress, most in various stages of revision. Trouble is, I can't seem to commit to any of them.

There's the one I wanted to submit to the New England Crimebake contest, but lost so much time during the 3-day power outage last week that I don't think it will be done in time (April 30). There's the one I want to submit to Mr. Bagley's anthology. A few others that I dusted off from when I wrote them years ago, and the two zombie short stories that need overhauling.

I can't figure out why I can't commit. It's not that I'm afraid to work on them. I know exactly what they need and I know how to accomplish that. Maybe it's because there are too many in similar stages, but I don't think so. Neither do I think it's because my novel is not quite done (I normally have trouble with new projects until old ones are done, but that's never affected my short fiction).

Has anyone else ever encountered this? What did you do about it? I know the short answer - pick one. Finish it. Then pick another and finish that. And so on down the line.

But which one?

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Comment by Patricia Abbott on April 29, 2007 at 11:22pm
I don't usually write a story with any particular venue in mind so this isn't a problem for me. Until now, that is. When I know I should be working on the novel and am seduced by the short stories. I'd pick the one that's in your head most and start from there.
Comment by Steven Torres on April 29, 2007 at 2:06am
Happens to me all the time, but rarely bothers me. I might even respond to the dilemma by starting a brand new story. Maybe a different way might be to look at the projected markets - which deadlines are looming largest? (Mind you, if you know you can't finish in time, then that deadline isn't looming - it has loomed already.)

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