Do you ever open an email from an editor informing you that your submission has been accepted and scream ‘Aaargh’? Well, that’s what I did a few hours ago.
I have to confess that I had done a simultaneous submission on said story and another market had accepted it just last night. What a waste of acceptances! I would have been honoured to see my story in either of the ezines. Of course, I told the second editor that it had been accepted elsewhere. A nice problem? Noooo. Very embarrassing. My daughter the journalist tells me that simultaneous submissions are the big no-no in her line of business and, indeed, this used to be the situation when I started writing, but the lines are blurred now. I do see the argument though.
Still on the subject of subbing, I’ve spent a large part of this week on story I wrote some time ago, editing it and generally getting up to scratch. I’m sure most of us have many mediocre stories on our computers which require time and a lot of multi-faceted thinking to render them ‘acceptable’. This job, which I put down on my bullet list for Monday (with a possible overflow on to Tuesday), eventually extended to Thursday morning, the deadline for the competition I was targeting being Thursday evening. I kept thinking I’ve nearly finished, but every time I looked at it ‘for the final time’ I found more that needed to be improved. I’d put it away for a few hours, get on with ordinary life, and within a few minutes realise that something else won’t do at all. No wonder I find editing so stressful, particularly with a looming deadline.
Then there’s the After Submission Let Down. By this time your brain has let go and other possible improvements and downright errors loom before you. Whoever says they find the creative process relaxing?
I can’t complain, though. I’ve had two (three?) acceptances for short stories this week. My acceptances tend to come altogether, the rejections too.