I made my first short story submission yesterday–well, my first story submission at all, ever. It’s a piece I wrote a few years ago, and have made slight, slight edits to it over the years, sharpening it up in places as I learn more about what good writing is (not that I do that, exactly). I paid Writer’s Digest $25, ignored the fact that I have a credit card payment due in a few days, and clicked “Submit.”
I don’t know much about statistics, but I know my chances of being chosen in the top 25 are slim. The thing is, I really like my story. I’m entertained every time I read the thing. So, even if the (wonderful, intelligent, luminous) people over at WD don’t think my story is quite the right thing, I’m honestly just happy that I finished the story. It’s done. I’ve never had a story that was officially, truly, undoubtedly (at least for this week) done. Says a lot about my writing process, huh? I have dozens of stories that are works in progress, some more so than others. I always envisioned my scraps of stories to one day fit together into one magnum opus, stitched together from the vignettes composed over the course of the erratic years of my twenties. If nothing happens with this submission, I’ll just keep sending the story off, hoping someone else will enjoy it as much as I do.
Instead of jumping back into my novel, which has almost convinced me that I’m stuck in a bottomless pit of something I don’t have the skills to control, I’ll test the waters with another short story. Something brand new. Not pulling from that sloppy, but oddly adorable, quilt of past works in progress.
But first, sloppy joe’s for dinner.