All right, so my buddy Sherri challenged me – rightfully – to basically put up or shut up.
She’s not the only one. My beloved wife said the same thing in a different way. She wondered aloud how I could overcome my fear of rejection.
Annie said something similar when I struggled to get my kiriban prize started. (Thank you, Annie, if I haven’t said so already.)
Sherri, though, was the first one who pointed out that I’m not afraid of rejection. I’m not afraid of hearing harsh things about my work. I’ve come to a place where I’m able to stand on my ability. I’ve pulled enough books off the shelves at B&N or Borders and found them severely lacking. I’ve seen enough crap in print to know, even if I’m rejected in the most cruel terms, I don’t have to believe it. That’s only one person’s opinion, and not necessarily reflective of the masses.
So, my wife poses, if that’s not the reason you’re balking at submission – what IS the reason?
I don’t know. I have no answer. Part of me feels I don’t have anything to offer, for one. I don’t have things written which fit the specs of “short story” for one thing. Most of my “short” works end up blossoming into novellas. I hate that, for the record, but it is what it is. And while I have a few pieces I’m really proud of — “Remember Me”, for one, and “Getting Away from it All” – I don’t know where I can get them in print. They’re long – almost 20K each, if I recall.
But is that a good excuse? I have a couple at least that are under 6,000 words, and I have at least one under 4,000 words. I don’t know how many places take ‘em that long, and I don’t know how many paying markets there are for my stuff, but … why aren’t I looking into it?
Hm. That’s the question.
Well, I guess not having an excuse can’t be an excuse any more. So, I put it to you: Is this an indication I need to take the next step? Am I now ready to move to the next echelon and shoot for a small part of my dream? (Just FYI, if I could sit around and write short stories all the time and make a living doing it, believe me I would; I enjoy writing them more than novel-length work.)
Sound off, y’all. I’d love to hear what you’ve got to say.
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