As I’ve mentioned before, I’ve been sending short stories out to magazines this year, in the hope of building up a portfolio of credits, not to mention to validate my assertion that “I am a writer”.
You may remember my frustration at receiving so many rejections. But what are rejections, if not slightly painful stabs of encouragement? Rejections are just psychologically damaging bullets of motivation, right? Sure, they hurt, but they drive you to improve.
This is shit – try harder.
Stop sending trash – learn to write.
What the fuck is this? – Go back to school.
REJECTIONS ARE GREAT, SEE?
So, imagine my surprise when my latest attempt, a flash fiction piece called Purgatory, received the following reply:
“I very much enjoyed “Purgatory” and I’ve sent it to the other editors for their consideration. Final cuts won’t be until mid-September, so please be patient.”
DO YOU KNOW WHAT THIS MEANS??
It means the story made it past the slush pile!
Now, whether these other editors like the story or not, there’s progress here. My work is no longer being discarded out of hand! Someone has read it and liked it.
I can’t tell you how excited this has made me. The magazine, based in the US, is a pro-paying market, specifically $0.05 a word. So, for a 1,000 word flash fiction, you’re looking at the princely sum of $50! Now that Brexit has fucked sterling right in the Queen’s ear, that’s worth almost £50!
Sure, that won’t pay for a night out in London – which I’ll surely be having if I get published – but by Jove I’ll be a published writer. That, friends, is invaluable. That’s what I’ve been striving for, what I’ve been dreaming about.
Sure, it’s one measly short story. And it hasn’t even made it into the mag yet – but it means I’m getting closer.
It means I’m not a total fucking shambles.
It means, if I keep going, something good might happen!
(Cue next blog post: 12 reasons writers shouldn’t get their hopes up…)