East of Constantinople, West of Shanghai

The Bradbury-Heinlein Method


So, to recap: Ray Bradbury said you should write a story per week, for one year, because nobody can write 52 stinkers in a row. On the other hand, Bob Heinlein said you should finish what you start writing, and send it off to a publisher, and keep posting it until you sell it, no matter how many times it bounces back.

In the last months I’ve been applying what I am now calling the Bradbury-Heinlein Method: I wrote, finished and submitted 14 stories between October and December 2018: two were sold and four bounced back, one of them twice – and it was submitted a third time.

And in 2019, that is in the last thirteen days, I sold another, and another bounced back – I got the pink slip today, and I am currently looking for another market. But in the meantime I have submitted four more stories – two of them today. And as soon as I post this, I will start working on my first non-fiction on-spec submission.

I’m on a roll, and let’s hope it lasts. I think it will, barring disasters.
I like writing. I always liked writing. And this carousel of new stories written, submissions, rejections and sales, is working for me, and actually brought back part of the fun I might have missed in the past few months. There’s a gaming element to it, a sort of addictive thing. Like a pinball in which I must actually create my own balls before I shoot them on the table.

Doing the math, should I keep up the current rhythm – 4 stories in 12 days means 120 stories in one year. A lot more than Ray Bradbury suggested. But really, I will have to slow down – I’ve other projects lined up, other jobs, translations and stuff. And yet… 52 is not a bad number, and I’m getting there – statistics and time are on my side.

What a strange business, this writing business is!

Author: Davide Mana

Paleontologist. By day, researcher, teacher and ecological statistics guru. By night, pulp fantasy author-publisher, translator and blogger. In the spare time, Orientalist Anonymous, guerilla cook.

5 thoughts on “The Bradbury-Heinlein Method

  1. Nice theory. And, proven success with some of the stories, so yeah, go with it 🤗


  2. Thanks for sharing this method, and best wishes to you!


  3. Pingback: More news from isolation, and plans | Karavansara

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