Saturday, May 16, 2009

I am being surprised and delighted

When I started this new habit of announcing, to the day or whatever higher power, "Surprise and delight me!"as I got out of bed, I didn't really believe it would happen. At least not on a daily basis. But it has. Someone could argue that I am now noticing things more, or allowing myself to be delighted where I might not have been - but whatever the case, I am surprised and delighted pretty much on a daily basis! Today's surprise came in the form of a blog post over at the Emerging Writers Network. I had submitted a review to the EWN of Alexandra Chasin's short story collection, Kissed By... , as a guest post for Short Story Month, which was published on the blog two days ago. I thought that was it for my appearances over there.

Then just now I got one of those most useful Google Alerts, I check out EWN, and there I am again - but this time I - or one of my short stories - am the subject! Dan Wickett is discussing On A Roll, one of the stories in The White Road and Other Stories. He discusses a particular aspect of the story, and I won't give it away here, pop over there and see what he has to say. He is most kind about my book, which is the delightful part! He asked me a question at the end and so I broke with protocol and left a comment to explain a little about how the story came about.

I would also like to mention here that it hasn't all been roses and delightful surprises in Tania's Writing World. I have received a number of rejections and failed to get anywhere in quite a few competitions. I don't normally mention these, but in the interests of not skewing the statistics, I thought it was time I did. These always bring about a short, sharp stab of disappointment, but this gets fainter over time, and I just start thinking about where next to send the stories. I'm always submitting stories - now only to paying markets, as I mentioned in an earlier post. I've submitted stories to places I never even considered - Tin House, Ploughshares, A Public Space - and am expecting rejections any day now! (Although also open to being surprised and delighted, of course, but a girl's gotta be realistic...)

So, another week starts and now that I have broken through the 1000-word barrier (I wrote a short story last week which is a mammoth 1200 words), I am expecting to push that a little further, and perhaps not write any flash stories for a while, to try and wean myself off the thrill of instant gratification. We will see how that goes.


Sarah Hilary said...

Great policy, Tania, and congratulations on the delightful surprise! Long may they continue.

Lauri Kubuitsile said...

I'm going to try 'surprise and delight me'. I do believe attitude matters for reasons I'm not quite sure. Last week I was sick and feeling very sorry for myself and the world gave me what I expected- crashed cars, reluctant publishers, quiet contests. Friday I said no more- and suddenly our producers sent back the scripts in all the rosy colours from their box of crayons. Yeah!

Douglas Bruton said...

Love your delight and surprise me call to the universe. I shall try that.

Funny to hear you vowing not to write any more flash for a while. I have set myself the target of averaging one a day for the year and am a little ahead of my target. This weekend I started a wee project: a complete novel written in flashes. I wrote six thousand words almost and all done in eleven flash sized chunks. Delighted myself in the very last one!!

Best of luck with your subbed pieces.


Sarah Salway said...

Well, the universe surprises and delights you - I KNEW I'd got this from you! - but you also put the work in. You deserve all this and much much more this year. We'll be cheering you on.