So here's where I am:
Writing seems so easy and fun when you don't think about trying to get published--and sure, if you can be satisfied with the fact that no one else will ever see all the work you put into a story, don't sweat over it. If you don't care then don't worry about getting published. But if you want to be published, that's a chore in itself. Writing is just step one.
I sent out a half dozen or so stories a while back and have got responses from most of them (and in the meantime have been too busy to send much more out) (responses: no thanks, no thanks, and, you're getting closer...). So, with only a couple left floating around, it's time to prepare and send out another round. There are a few anthologies I want to try, and certain markets I feel more comfortable submitting to because I've been reading them for a while.
That's another thing; when it comes to submitting for an anthology you can only make your best guess as to what the editor wants, whereas if you want to submit to magazines you have to read them for a while first and, to have a good base to work with, you have to read a bunch of magazines. This makes for a LOT of reading.
Furthermore, you are not the only one writing clever stories and submitting them. The responses I've got from a couple different places give this indication: they get scores of submissions in a day, hundreds in a month, and only publish a few per issue. Your chances are less than 1%, even if you've got something great.
Which is why I've been trying to get myself out there everywhere possible; for me this means keeping on top of submission deadlines and the stories I have, coordinating what might go where, who wants what, accepted lengths, etc. I have a list of what I'm planning to send out soon (just once I'm satisfied they're good enough, which better be before the deadlines...), as well as a list of those magazines with designated reading periods, and what I might send to them once they've opened up. I'm working as my very own secretary right now.
And, finally, the issue of editing. I want to give these stories one more go-over before I send them out, but as I just did this with most of them, say, a week ago, I'll want to wait yet another week before I read again. Then they can go.
And hopefully someone will like at least one of these poor homeless critters and adopt it ...