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So I just posted (yes, seriously – “snail mail”) entries for a short story competition. The closing date is the end of the month, but with my luck the postal service will be on strike again.

I couldn’t even use my own printer. Something went wrong with the daft machine and replacing the part will cost almost as much as a new printer. When I try to print something, it looks like something is scratching letters away with sharp claws from top to bottom. Probably a gremlin… (It can’t possibly be the imagining-something-or-other my favourite IT guy said – it has to be some kind of fairy-tale creature.)

gremlins in a printer artistic use

I think it’s a sign. I shouldn’t enter into competitions – or send manuscript submissions to publishing companies – that only want hardcopy. Which sadly eliminates more than half of my local options. (Yes. All of the biggest publishing houses in South Africa still insist on a full manuscript sent to them in hardcopy. And they don’t send it back… I only hope they recycle.)

At least the rest of the competitions I’m entering the next few weeks all insist on email submissions.

Now all I have to do is actually finish those stories…