Recently I met with Sasha Jackson Mysteries author Jill Edmondson at a nice little pub in downtown Toronto. She gave me a few words of sage advice: Shit or Get off the Pot. Which is a nice way of saying ‘Why aren’t you published yet, numb-nuts’?
I don’t know why either. I could take a guess though:
Am I not good enough?
Nah. I’ve seen worse writers get pubbed.
Am I afraid?
Nope. I love people reading my stuff.
Do I really have anything ‘finished’ to submit?
You see, unless you really finish something, you can’t very well send it off, can you? And by finish I mean polished, burnished, shining, clean; when that sucker’s done like dinner and ready to eat. Or read.
And unless you start showing people that you have been finishing your work, you start to get that stench of a writer who’s not really a writer. You’re just saying you are.
In my case, my brain goes a mile a minute, and focus is at a premium. I hop from story to story, hoping to finish something, anything, instead of just finishing one thing. One thing, that’s all that matters. Like Curly the Cowboy once said.
With that in mind, I actively started looking into short story anthology submissions, and lo and behold, I got into one. It’s called Passion’s Prism, and I wrote a short and comedic little romance thing for it. Not usually my thing, but I thought, what the hell, you know?
Cue the euphoria!
Short story contests, anthologies, it’s all good. And it motivates, lemme tell you. And that takes the pressure off my finishing a novel, which is also a good thing.
Also, you’ll notice the newish blog of mine. It’s still needs tweaking, but I like it. You’ll still find writing articles here, but I’ll also be posting experimental shorts and other things. Maybe strange things.
So, go finish something, dammit. And make it good.
Note: Thanks to Jill Edmondson and Jason Kemp for the much needed motivation!