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Embers ~ Summer 2023
A quick glimpse into my summer with writing
In lieu of a new work of fiction today, here is my seasonal Embers post—a quick glimpse into my life with writing. Enjoy!
With the summer season coming to a close, I wanted to finally send out an Embers post. It’s been a while.
I can’t remember a more fun-filled summer in recent memory. My family was able to take trips to Vermont and Maine, I went fishing with my children, swimming, horseback riding, disc golfing, and we even had some time in between for s’mores and campfires.
All in all, it was a blast.
From a writing standpoint, I don’t know if I’ve ever been more excited about the various projects that I’m whittling away at. Here’s a quick summary of what’s happening in my writing life both on Substack and off of it.
50 Fifties Book Announcement
Big news! Over the summer, I worked on my first book which I intend to self-publish. I hinted at it earlier this past spring, but it’s finally becoming a reality. The book will be slim—no more than 60 or 70 pages—and it will feature fifty of my favorite fifty-word stories.
It’s titled 50 Fifties: A Justin Deming Literary Project.
Self-publishing has already proven to be the correct course of action. I’ve assembled a small team of brilliant and kind individuals to lend me a hand, and they too have been busy at work behind the scenes. One of my teacher friends, Andrea, was the first to see my project. She beta-read the book and gave me general feedback with some light editing.has been a tremendous help on the graphics front (most stories will have an accompanying image/artwork), and John Lightle has created a beautiful book cover for me. He is also assisting me with marketing and the general layout of the book.
Thank you to these three individuals who have helped me tremendously with this project. I wouldn’t be able to do it without you.
Though I do not have a release date planned, I do hope for the book to be published before Christmas. Stay tuned!
Fifties by the Fire
The one-year mark of Fifties by the Fire is fast approaching. I have a celebration post planned for the occasion, and it will be a bit different than most of our writing challenges/prompts. It’s one you won’t want to miss.
I will say this: it will feature John Lightle’s photography.
It amazes me that so many kind souls show up week in and week out to participate in these challenges. Together, we are carving out a unique niche in the fiction writing community on Substack. Thanks to all who regularly read, contribute, and share these Fifties by the Fire prompts with others.
Though we’re a year in, I can say with confidence we’re just getting started.
My Embers posts admittedly fell by the wayside these past few months. Moving forward, my plan is to share a seasonal Embers post. This gives me a very loose deadline to work with, which is what I need from a time standpoint. I aim to share four Embers posts annually: spring, summer, fall, and winter. When these posts are sent out—at some point during each season— paying subscribers will receive an additional post (which will contain a collection of writing prompts) as my way of saying thank you.
If you are a free subscriber and want the prompts, but don’t want to become a paid subscriber, don’t sweat it. No worries at all. Shoot me a quick email at firstname.lastname@example.org and I’ll comp you a year, no questions asked.
Fall Contest Reader
A few weeks ago, I was approached by Susanna Baird, editor of Five Minutes (publisher of 100-word micro memoir). She asked me if I would like to be a reader for their upcoming fall contest, which I immediately agreed to!
Susanna is an incredibly kind editor who has previously published a couple of my stories (“Phantoms” and “In Another Life”, which was a finalist in the 2022 spring contest). This contest might be up your alley if you enjoy writing “fifties” or 100-word stories. There’s a $5 submission fee, but you are allowed up to five micro-memoir entries. Plus, yours truly will have a say and get a chance to send you through to the contest judge, Karen Zey. For more details about the contest, please click here.
Creative Writing Club
Last but certainly not least, I will be taking on the role of Creative Writing Club advisor at my middle school. Over the course of the year, I’d like to set up interviews with authors. These Q&As can be held via email or potentially live over Zoom. If you would like to be interviewed by a bunch of young writers, please let me know.
When I sent out my very first post on Substack back in October of 2020 (under the publication name Micro 2 Go), I had no idea that I would still be writing on this platform almost three years later.
At this point, writing my weekly fiction and hosting Fifties by the Fire have both become an important part of my life.
Thank you, readers near and far, for being a part of it. I’m beyond grateful that you continue to choose to spend some of your time reading my work.
Wishing you all the best,
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