So, I completed my 30 submissions in 30 days challenge and all I have to say is PHEW! What a challenge. It was like running a marathon after only ever having trotted down the block to your favorite coffee shop. Here are the results I've seen so far. And here is the takeaway: how to get rejected in 5 easy steps.
One thing that makes it easier to sit down every day and write is to sit down every day and write. What I mean by that smart ass remark is that there is a lubing up of the cogs, so to speak, when you become consistent. Every little action becomes smoother. You don’t have to put as much effort or planning into the task.
Recently a friend asked me to sit down with him for an hour each day to teach him how to become a Virgo: i.e. neat, organized, and crystal clear. As the weeks went on, something became very clear to him (and me, but that goes without saying): the chaos and drama he creates in his life is a protective cover. What does this cover protect? It protects him from being seen.
I’ve been having a tough time keeping up with my one submission per day and, quite frankly, not doing this perfectly makes me want to give up. It’s an easy excuse—this giving up because I’m not doing it “perfectly”—and one that I think I shall I ignore as though it’s a cranky little kid who needs to get her ass into bed for nap time.
Today I submitted a short story called Therapeutic Madness, about a woman who quietly slides into a spiritual meltdown, which I illustrate with ever-changing grammatical perspectives (i.e. first person, second person, third person).
Someone asked me how I figure out where to submit my short stories and novels. I told them about my crystal ball and added that for $29.99 I could provide them with a list of submission targets. A writer has got to be creative about earning a living.
And that is why I have to convince myself every day that I can and I will get published, and to send my work out despite my mind’s best efforts to persuade me that it’s a waste of time and I’ll never succeed and who do I think I am anyway and isn’t it easier to just put my dreams on the back burner and get on the path more traveled?
So I received my first rejection yesterday. Upstreet Magazine declined my short story Sally’s Pigeons. And no, it’s not an avian resource guide. According to my plan, that’s one down, 199 to go—if I’m in the same league as Louis L’Amour, 139 if I’m side-by-side with Jack Canfield, or 21 years, 12 months, and 24 days if I compare myself to Gertrude Stein.