Well, it was bound to happen. After 141 days with Analog, my story Button Pusher was finally rejected today. I have to admit, I was actually a little surprised in the end. At 141 days I’d begun to think that maybe this was the one that was going to make it. I have a post scheduled to go live this afternoon pointing to an article about when to call it quits at writing, and when to keep trying (and how).
I’m not bitter, I’m not giving up, I’m still doing, but yes, of course this is disappointing. And yes, I’ve already brushed it up and sent it out again.
Eleven years ago this morning it snowed.
Not heavy, not blindingly, but enough to make me question whether I was insane. We had somewhere to be that morning, a very important appointment. We drove up from Fredericksburg with as much haste as we could, unsure of what the day would have in store for us. Nervous. Excited. Scared and exhilarated. All of that and more.
You see, there are singular moments in your life when the universe as you know it is on the cusp of changing forever. You anticipate these moments, you know what the before and after will be like, and yet when they come to you you can only sit and stare at them in wonder, amazed that your life was ever any other way before. This was one of these moments (I’ve had five that I can identify without hesitation). Our lives would never be the same again, our fates forever rewritten and rewound as we set off on a new chapter in our lives.
Today, Katy was born and we became parents for the first time. Its been an amazing eleven years. Amazing to see how we’ve grown and changed as our family has grown and adapted. Amazing to see how our oldest has grown and developed into an individual, equal measures of temperament and influence from her mother and me, and yet recognizably different and unique. I’m so proud of the person Katy is growing up to be.
But to the fact that she’s turning eleven today? Wow. Tempered with a check to see how grey my temples are.
As I mentioned in my last post, this is the year of doing, not trying. Fairly bold words to say on only the second day of the year – there are still 360+ days to fall short of that. But as a sign of my commitment, I’ve pushed a story out to Clarkesworld today. I know it won’t be accepted, but that’s ok. Clarkesworld is always my first stop (I’m sure they just love that extra fluff in their inbox). Clarkesworld tends to publish higher end fiction, so they’re always my first stop as a sort of litmus test. I’ll know I’ve made it as a writer when I finally get a piece of fiction published in Clarkesworld.
Today I also had to make a decision (minor) related to my commitment to being published. Duotrope has long been a great resource for finding markets and tracking submissions, but last month they announced that they could no longer afford to carry on for free. Starting yesterday, the bulk of their services are on a subscription only model. Until today, I hemmed and hawed on this, not sure I wanted to commit the $5 a month (which, being completely in the here and now, is cheaper to me than a year at $50). Part of doing, though, is not inhibiting yourself from being able to. So I paid for my first month as a duotrope supporter today. Now to start abusing it by putting stories out there.