I got a rejection from the Atlantic Monthly yesterday. My first thought: if I knew how long it would take them to reject me, I never would have sent it in.
There’s no shame in being rejected by that magazine. It’s possible that there are periodicals that accept submissions that are tougher to get into, but none with the sheer whamness of Atlantic Monthly. Sending them a submission was an expression of faith in myself.
I got rejected. I’m OK with that. What I’m not OK with is that right now I hardly have anything out there trying to find a home. The business side of things is languishing, even as I write some words I quite like. I have a pretty sweet story ready to go, and I know where I’m sending it. All I need is a cover letter, and a message to my stateside postal enabler (Hi Dad!) and it’s done. That has been the state of things for three weeks.
NaNoWriMo. Bless it, curse it, dance in the meadow, bludgeon myself with a sharp rock. I need NaNoWriMo. I feel my productivity fall off as summer wanes, and November rekindles the fire. This year is the toughest since the first, and when I’m not too busy whining about it I’m having a blast. Add hundreds of new Jer’s Novel Writer users, though, and there’s no time for anything else. Say, writing, for instance.
I think December may be busier than November.
To veer suddenly to the side, yesterday I was at the Little Café Near Home, and I was thinking about a Chapter One I posted in this blog a while back and dang if the idea didn’t grow. I looked over the previous episode tonight and it didn’t have the punch I remembered, but Natasha has developed in my head since then. I spent a few hours spinning the tale through various scenarios, and it was fun. I came up with a nice twist I’ll be able to use somewhere eventually.
I feel oddly guilty about spending all that time with Natasha, though. Guilty because I have so many things going right now. Oddly because most Americans spend more time watching television each day than I spent developing a frighteningly compelling character. A great new character who stands on her own is the pay dirt of my profession, her birth a moment to celebrate, and I missed the party, frustrated by my lack of productivity. My blue-sky time was pure self-indulgence. Sitting around imagining ridiculous things is my television. I could do it all day, but I’d never get anything done.