Here’s something that’s both dorky and really honest: I’m scared to send out my latest story. It’s the most irrational thing I can think of, especially given my stated writing goals for the year, but as I sit here, all pumped up and yet fluttery in the tummy at the same time, staring at 59 pages I’ve worked my ass off to get right, I finally know why I’m scared.
It’s so corny: I’m sitting here thinking (with good reason), What if it’s not good enough?
I know better than that. I know you can’t win if you don’t play, and if I don’t get this thing in the mail (yes, the market I’m reaching out to first is old-fashioned as hell), it’s gonna sit here collecting dust, same as my will. I know I’ve got to let it off my leash, turn it out into the world and see what that world makes of it, but dammit, that’s hard.
This is the first in what I hope is a body of work I’ll work with for the rest of my life. I’ve been planning and structuring this Enchanted Forest material for the better part of a decade. I’ve put almost everything else aside so I can focus on getting this right, and I’m as certain of it as I can be without sharing it. I’m standing right there at “the line” between being a writer and an author, shuffling my feet for no reason beyond emotional attachment.
I know this isn’t the only place to publish. I know that there’s a good chance they’re going to pass on it. I know that no only means no for this market, this editor, at this point in time. I know it like I know that butter goes with popcorn.
Now it’s time to act like it. Tonight I’m printing out a few labels, licking an envelope, and hopefully not getting a paper cut on my tongue. Tonight I seal that fucker up and get it out there with the mail in the morning, because I believe I’ll feel better for doing it. I also believe it gets harder to do every time I put it off, and that there’s a hump climb over since I spent a few years getting myself in order, both personally and creatively. This is an advanced part of both, and I can’t ignore its importance. And so, I will send this out.