Fall is here, and everywhere I’m being hit with advertisements of crisp, bright air, burnt-umber forests, and fallen leaves. Where we live, however, in the damp microclimate on the inland side of the Oregon Coast Range, the days have seen more rain and fog than bracing morning air, and our famous evergreen forests are mostly just that. Green.

But I suppose all the ads and fall decorations are kinda nice. And I have to admit, when the evening falls and it hasn’t been raining, and isn’t overcast, there is a different hue to the sky. A bit more gilt, a little clearer. And the shadows do have that ‘Fall’ angle to them. Which means it’s becoming the time to stay indoors with a hot cup of java. Read some books. Play some chess.

A lot has happened since I’ve last sat down with the intention of writing for this haphazard little blog. It was almost a year ago—Fall of 2016—since I last updated any of the content of this website, and it has probably been at least six months since I’ve had any consistency on Twitter, my primary social platform.

I haven’t been idle, however. I’ve been writing. Lots. And submitting my stories, and reaping their rejection letters one by one, one after another. I’ve re-thought my processes for plotting and structuring and editing, and the actual act of writing itself as well. I’ve re-thought my techniques for submitting stories to magazines, and my strategies for targeting which stories will go where. And above all, I think I’ve learned. Learned which of these strategies seemed to work, and which ones didn’t.

Now, after almost a year of radio silence, I have finally begun to see the flowers of these labors bud on the branch. At the moment, four pieces I have written since Into the Rain (published in the 3rd Edition of The Machinery Magazine) have been accepted at different magazines. At present, I am required to be rather tight-lipped about all but one. That one is soon to be published in the first print edition of Spinetingler Magazine in years.

For anyone not familiar with Jack Getze and Sandra Ruttan’s excellent online publication, I heartily recommend giving the website a peruse. Since it started as an e-zine back in 2005, Spinetingler Magazine has delivered an interesting mix of author interviews, book reviews, writing advice, and—of course, and very importantly—mystery and crime fiction. Spinetingler eventually began to release content through Kindle, as well as through their own imprint, Snubnose Press. In this day and age, however, print publishing can be an unpredictable game, and for the last few years Spinetingler has been publishing all their excellent content directly from their website.

I am very pleased to announce, however, that Spinetingler is once again releasing a print issue as an official imprint of Down & Out Books. I am equally pleased to announce that my short story, “Child Fighter,” is one of the pieces selected for the collection. I am personally very happy with this story, and I am very honored that Ruttan and Getze thought it worth including in the Spinetingler Fall Issue.

While I could plug my story a little more, I’d rather simply let the title speak for itself, and recommend that you pick up a copy of the collection this November to give it a read. I myself am very excited to read the other included stories. I’ve been a reader of the magazine already for some time now, and I know its editorial staff’s picks will not disappoint.

As I alluded to above, I also have three other works accepted at another magazine. While I can’t give any details yet, it is possible they will see the light of day sometime during the next year. I will give more details on this as their publications approach.

Well, that just about wraps it up for now. Hopefully, I will be writing here again soon, perhaps to discuss some of those rejections I’ve been getting, and what I feel I’ve learned from them. With any luck I’ll have more good news before Fall of next year.

Also, I am interested in making a closer connection to the readers of my website’s content. What would you like to have me talk about in future posts? Let me know!

Thanks as always for reading!


S. B. Watson

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About the Author

S. B. Watson lives and writes in evergreen Salem, Oregon. When he’s not practicing Historic European Martial Arts or playing Bluegrass music, you can find him deep in his library, surrounded by books, writing.

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