Inspiration, Schminspiration

How did you spend your Monday night? Watching celebs traipse across the dance floor with scantily clad professional dancers on Dancing with the Stars? Or young women foolishly pining away for a dufus Bachelor? Or, at 2:00 a.m., were you sleeping like I should have been?

I spent my night way into the wee hours of Tuesday morning revising two essays to submit to the Chicken Soup publishers for another anthology…this one for/about divorced folk (or the kinder title, “Divorced Souls”). I had already submitted these essays elsewhere – one about 2 years ago; one about 6 weeks ago. Although I cursed myself for only getting 3 hours of sleep last night, my time editing was well-spent: these pieces are now much sharper and better than before. I’ll forget all about my current, sleep-deprived state if they’re selected for publication.

I didn’t really set out to do all this heartwarming, funny, yada yada writing; it just kind of happened. Two years ago, I submitted my first ditty for the Chicken Soup for Mothers of Preschoolers Soul. It didn’t make the cut, but the reviewer responded to my follow-up inquiry by saying she remembered my essay and that it made her laugh. Maybe she was just saying this. Maybe not. Either way, I filed this little nugget into the “keep trying” area of my brain.

Last summer I submitted an essay for Chicken Soup for the Working Mother’s Soul. In March, I learned my essay has been selected as a finalist for the book, due out this fall. After signing a release form faster than you can say “Pick me, please, please, please!!,” I am now waiting to hear the final verdict. This would be my first published piece, which would be GREAT, so I’m keeping my fingers crossed.

Along the way, I also submitted a short anecdote for a book about parenting and an essay for an anthology about single moms. (I couldn’t very well pass these up, could I?) And, of course, I have my divorce stories, submitted early this morning in the nick of time.

Regardless of whether any of my essays are selected, I’m pretty much tapped out of touching personal stories and inspirational crap. One person can write only so much…

…then again, I hear they’re looking for stories for/about Tired & Cranky-Type A-Kick Ass-Women Souls. Count me in.

Note to the reviewers/publishers: My reference to “inspirational crap” is 3 hours of sleep talking. I’m all for inspiration, perspiration, and, importantly, publication. Your books offer great opportunities and credits for writers, and they benefit readers going through many different life situations. I hope you’ll pick one or more of my essays one day soon. Thank you.

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3 thoughts on “Inspiration, Schminspiration

  1. Susan, congratulations on meeting the deadline, even though you might have to pump yourself with caffeine instead of champagne to celebrate. (And I absolutely love your kiss-up paragraph at the end!)

    Good luck with the submissions! And now, because you’re tired of writing personal narratives, it’s back to the novel, right? (Or at least back to staining the bookcase, huh?)

  2. Judy, I’m taking a break tonight to work on the bookcase (or if I collapse from exhaustion, to relax)…but, yes! I am looking forward to finishing up the novel re-write. Imagine – LOOKING FORWARD to it. That says something. I won’t, however, put a timeframe on the table because in the last 2 years I’ve missed every one after the words leave my mouth. I’ll just say I’m close. Very close.

    Glad you like the last part. A superstitious person might feel I’ve jinxed myself just by writing about the submissions, but I feel it’s out of my hands at this point. Then again, a little kiss-up may not hurt.

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