Submitting Short Stories

June is shaping up to be a record month. Despite a number of other things claiming my attention, including two graduate classes, I managed to edit two short stories and submit three this month. For someone who’s been rather slim on the short stories being finished, this is definitely a lot of progress.

When one editor told me that my short was going to a senior editor, my first thought is, “Is that good?” It turns out it is, but for someone who’s still learning all this stuff, it’s a bit surprising. And also amazing. It may still be rejected, but I learned something, and that’s never a bad thing. Hearing that a story gets rejected 12-14 times on average is what keeps me going.

Short stories for me are also a bit like performing scales before playing a piece of music. It’s a good way to explore middles and ends, which are, for me, at least, the toughest parts of the story. The middle tends to get messy and the ending always seem to take forever to arrive at. Beginnings are wonderful: everything is fresh and new and it’s easy to be enthusiastic.

Someone told me that usually it’s the middle where authors lose their enthusiasm and focus, which brings in issues while working on the ending. That was helpful, because now I’ll be on the lookout for this in my own writing.

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