Tag Archives: sadness

First of all, for any readers of this blog in the NYC area, I’ll be going to Black and White (86 E. 10th St, btw 3rd and 4th Ave.) to participate in the readings starting at 8pm this Sunday. Who knows what I’ll read.

But who am I kidding. I think I know all my readers by name, and most of you live out of state.

More importantly, last night I compiled all the pieces of the first draft of “Seal,” which is the second short story in my 12 months, 12 stories project for 2013.

Today, I’ve been wondering how I feel about it. I think I feel good, but I can’t escape a crippling sense of depression. Maybe it’s my standard post-partum; maybe it’s something else. I feel super-critical of the piece right now (the story centers around a mom who doesn’t want to be a mom, and writing a horror story about that strikes me now as potentially terribly sexist, which was exactly the opposite of my intent), and perhaps the sadness of having fallen short of my own goals is what’s at work on me right now.

Or maybe I’m just tired. It’s been a long couple of days.

But now I’m going to let this one sit and go back to “Sprachlos” for another draft before March comes around the corner and I start work on “Special Formats Processing.”

Abraham Road cover art

Abraham Road … coming later ….

The good news is that Abraham Road is in great shape. I am the worst judge of my own work, but early reader reaction suggests this short little book could be one of the coolest stories I’ve written.

I know I like it a lot. I’ve had some ups and downs with it over the last few months, but right now I’m pleased every time I go back to it.

The bad news is that I’ve decided to try and actually see what would happen if I submitted this story a few places. I’d love it if I could place it somewhere an editor might give it a look and fix it up. I’m sure there are ways it could be improved that I’m not seeing. No doubt, a writer is always too close to the work to see it best.

I have three places in mind (the market being rather limited for a piece which right now clocks in at 24,400 words). Combined rejection time for all of them: probably roughly four months.

And here I was, hovering over the ‘save and publish’ button on this past Sunday night. I talked myself out of it, and it was a good decision (found some typos in the morning! yeah!), but it hurts me and really tests the limits of my patience to have a real winner of a story ready to go that I can’t let anyone see.

Thinking about the long four months ahead of gathering enough rejection letters to justify self-publishing again … just makes me sad. It’s why I gave up submitting pieces to begin with — I don’t like having to wait for someone to tell me they don’t like what I wrote. Disappointment shouldn’t be so boring and time-consuming.

That’s why I love McSweeney’s and The Atlantic so much: one week response time! Got another rejection from McSweeney’s this week, in fact. Always makes my day.

Anyway, I believe this choice is the right one.

We’ll see if I can actually go through with it, though, or if I spaz out halfway through October and hit that damnable publish button.