Guest Blog by Jennifer Lee Rossman
And here we see the writer in her natural habitat, the frozen tundra of Twitter.
It is November 2, 2018. While other creatures are preparing themselves for holidays, the writer knows there is a more important season approaching: an open submission window for an anthology.
There are many anthologies vying for her attention, but she has worked with this editor before and has confidence in the editor‘s ability to produce a strong, engaging anthology.
But the writer is not prepared.
The writer is no newcomer to submission windows. She has a bookshelf of anthologies that she has contributed to, but she is not confident in her ability. She is just randomly throwing ideas together.
To make matters worse, she has just remembered that she has never actually seen the movie Ferngully and is attempting to base her entire story on a Ferngully coloring book she had when she was five. She will have to collect a large store of research if she is going to make it into this anthology.
Facing certain rejection unless she can find a plot, she expends all of her energy digging through Wikipedia for a fun fact she can base an entire story on.
She has gone off track, though. She was meant to be researching narwhals, not medieval curiosity cabinets. And yet… What is that? She tries not to get her hopes up, but it looks like a tiny seed of an idea.
Emboldened by her success at foraging for ideas, the writer has become overconfident.
Fear overwhelms her. The editor will certainly reject a story set during summer.
The writer considers giving up. Maybe this is not the right time to submit stories. Maybe her time for submitting stories is over.
But she pokes her head out of her burrow anyway, and she does a Google.
Relieved to learn that narwhal migration would be in the right area during winter after all, the writer finishes her story. But there is one more hurdle in her path to publication.
Frantically, the writer goes to the other members of her herd for assistance. Writers are social animals, when the mood strikes them, and her community is integral to her survival.
She arrives to the submission grounds on the first day of the window, and she presents her cover letter and freshly titled final draft to the prospective editor, who recognizes her from past submission windows but must judge the story on its own merits.
It is out of the writer‘s hands now…
Jennifer Lee Rossman is a queer, autistic, and disabled author who just thinks narwhals are neat. Her novel Jack Jetstark's Intergalactic Freakshow was published by World Weaver Press in 2018. She blogs at https://jenniferleerossman.blogspot.com and tweets @JenLRossman
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