Henderson Writers Group Newsletter November 5, 2012
I go over my stats compulsively. Five stories published and one due out next year. Obeying Mark Twain’s admonition about choosing exactly the right word, I rewrite my one paragraph biography with every submission. I’ve done book reviews and author interviews. Designed a chart to keep track of submission guidelines, then forget to look at it. Bookslut turned me down. I’m too bookish and not sluttish enough. (Or vice versa.) Sent out a long interview to Paris Review last week—by snail mail. Secretly hoped that the post office lady would ask me if I was a writer. Submitted the same review to two other anthologies. On a lark, or considering my late night dread, a raven, I queried a blog which looked good and carried interviews. To my great surprise, they want to publish mine. Today. All they want, besides the article, is my headshot, and a link to my websites, you know, for all those people who “wish to read more about” me. The article is ready to go. I do have a head and a camera to shoot it with. But somehow I never got around to building that all-important author’s platform.The innocent request from the “empty pocket” publisher goads me—only slackers and dilettantes fail to promote themselves. I hate my procrastinating, cowardly, genre-dashing, self more than ever. And suppose the Paris Review forgets it only publishes top-shelf, best-selling authors and journalists and chooses little old me? Will I have to rewrite my tiny literary biography to add that I turned down a career building, paying gig, because after midnight, when the only light in the house is cast by my computer screen, it’s the numbers that count: six down, one to go, and the year, and the night, is young.