Sunday, September 1, 2013

Back in Action

Yes, well I am back, 2 kids later and more determined than ever to write, just write and see what happens.  That may be the most valuable lesson that I have learned in the past 3 years... my two year old says it best,

 “Mom, let’s just see what happens...let’s do that plan.”  

“I like that plan” I tell him, and I do.  I like the freedom I’ve discovered of going with the flow.  Granted it is not a naked freedom, lying on my back in dappled sun going with the mellow flow.  For me, it is more of a white water rapids ride, where I am strapped with helmet, “absolute adult compliance” life preserver, and grippy gloves to disguise my white knuckles clutching my paddle as I get pulled into the ferocious flow.  

So, here is my plan.  I am taking a year off teaching to stay at home with my two kids. This in and of itself is scary, on so many levels, I think each of those levels may need a post or two to tease out, so I’ll just skip ahead scary decision number 2: to submit something to a competition of publication every single month.  I’ll post the first paragraph of my current work in progress here for feedback, because Lord knows, I will need it. 

 My first attempt was with Glimmer Train, a publication I very much like and recommend.  I felt that the category “New Writer’s Short Stories” sounded about right.  Especially because this publication only accepts work from yet unpublished writers.  Even better, the editors are two sisters.  Just the thought of my two sisters makes me want to be part of this venture.  My first plan was to distill my entire life saga into 5,000 words.  I only had 2 weeks and soon found this might be biting off more than I could chew.  So, I started small.  I found an old piece, one that I had written as an undergraduate and gotten a generous A- on.  I worked on it, made it presentable.  

When I had the opportunity for 250 words of explanation or cover letter I was tempted to write, “I know this isn’t good...but this is something I have to do...bear with me. I believe I’ll get better.”  I was panic stricken at the thought of actually submitting it but I did it.  I paid $15 and put some work (read: my tender heart and soul) out there to be evaluated by strangers.   I will post the first paragraph tomorrow for feedback and thoughts. I just wanted to let you know what I was up to and that I am back.  


  1. Katie,
    This is so awesome! And so inspiring to me!! I wish I could sit down with you in a coffee shop like we did years ago and that I could hear all about your journey to this decision and how it's going for you as you start writing again. I miss you and am excited I can connect with you again by reading your work here. Thanks for sharing this, and for inspiring me, as I'm staying at home with my 2 kiddos now and yearning for my writing days. Love, Melissa Kranzo, over in Michigan. :)

  2. Hi Melissa- It is funny... I was ordering a coffee just the other morning and suddenly was stuck by how much I miss you. You have always inspired me as a teacher and a writer. I can't wait to hear more about what you are up to. So crazy that we both have two kids now! I am struggling to find the time to write but I'm finding some nooks and crannies in the day. What I wouldn't give to sit down and have a chance to drink coffee as we write and talk:) But this phase of life has lots of joys too, just not as much sleep:)