The past couple of days–for reasons I’m not quite ready to broadcast on the blog–have been among the most atypical and challenging days of my life. So the good news I received yesterday from the editors of a journal I’m going to keep unnamed for the moment was especially well-timed. Basically, these editors had solicited a short story from me, and were coming back with a great deal of enthusiasm–along with several suggestions for improvement.
Now, this is a story that has already been published in the UK (so it would technically be “new” in a North American publication). It has received honors in a number of contests. A number of agents and editors seem impressed by it. It is, arguably, one of the two or three best stories I’ve written.
It’s a story I began writing about six years ago and published back in 2005. It’s a story I’ve further revised per some agent suggestions. And it’s the story that opens my collection, which has already “gone out” time after time after time.
So you might think that at this late date, I’d be closed to further revisions. You’d be wrong.
On the contrary, I am really excited about the ideas these editors have shared with me. Of course, I don’t think it hurts that their e-mail began and ended with major compliments for the story and expressed clear enthusiasm for and interest in publishing it. As I told them in my response message, this story means a lot to me, and their extremely thoughtful, sensible, and specific suggestions make me grateful.
These revisions may not be easy, and in the end I may not be able to complete all of them to everyone’s satisfaction. But I’m eager to try.