Lately, I've been on a quest. This quest has involved taking the 6 new Captain Quasar tales I wrote last summer and submitting them to as many professional science fiction publications as I possibly can. I figure if nothing else, I'll be introducing slush readers to Quasar before the novel comes out. And who knows? One or two tales might even be accepted. Stranger things have happened.
I had three different stories published by Perihelion Science Fiction last year, but they were serious tales. Maybe a little pulpy (that's my bag, baby), but not overtly humorous, and not Quasar-related. So I wasn't sure how the shenanigans of Captain Bartholomew Quasar and the crew of the Effervescent Magnitude would go over. The editor wants "hard science fiction" above all else, and as most of you know, that's not what I write.
But I decided to go for it anyway as part of this quest I may have mentioned. So I sent in a flash-sized tale to test the waters. The editor liked it all right, but he wanted something with more meat on its bones. "Can do," I said to myself (as I often do). Then I sent in the longest Quasar short story I've written to date: "Captain Bartholomew Quasar and the Kolarii Kidnappers on Zeta Colony Six" (6,200 words).
After a couple months, I heard back from the editor. He liked the story and wanted to publish it, but he had two concerns. One had to do with a perplexing plot point, which I was quick to remedy. The second had to do with the title; it was too long. Also easily remedied. We eventually agreed on "Captain Quasar and the Kolarii Kidnappers," and you can read the whole action-packed comedy in the January issue of Perihelion Science Fiction.
In other Quasar-related news, my publisher and I have started swapping edits on the first chapters of the novel. More on that later!