I’ve been silent for a few weeks, but that is not to say that I haven’t been active. For the last month, I have been involved in a job that is located two hours from my house, so most of my spare time has vanished as I commute.
This did not stop me from writing.
Over the last month I submitted several short stories and have been pleased to announce that one of them was selected.
Several others though, were rejected.
One story of mine, that I’m particularly proud of, has met its most recent rejection as a publisher folded under financial distress. Although I know such things do happen in the industry, it saddens me to hear the news and not just because now I must search for another publisher for said tale.
Another batch of rejections came with something more vital, a critique.
While harsh and unyielding, and certainly wounding to my pride, I found the rejections helpful. Not only were the words necessary in letting me understand what that particular editor requires, I found her advice invigorating. The bit I liked the most? Forget the word count.
What a relief to hear. I often feel trapped in making a minimum. Some stories, while long in my head, come out as little more than a handful of paragraphs when completed, forcing me to either slow the pacing, or voice the characters more against each other, which does not always fit the way the story is told.
I was also sent a handbook that is well written and entertaining, while still guiding and educational.
Between focusing on the few stories I have selected for myself for December, I am going to challenge myself to get at least ONE story printed by that particular editor.