Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Letting Go (or What's Love Boat Got to Do with It?)

Today is the day I've set for sending out Boys' Shorts, my collection of short stories targeted to teen boy readers. However, I sense myself delaying the final steps. What makes me hold on when I know the time is right to submit the manuscript?

One might think I have a fear of rejection. Knowing that the work is still in my hands keeps publishers from mailing me polite form letters that summarily dismiss the writing. I don't think this is a concern. Sure, rejection hurts, but I can always stock up on Häagen-Dazs to console myself.

Perhaps I am avoiding the grant applications that I need to complete. As long as I am tinkering with Boys' Shorts, the paperwork can wait. I am not a form fan. But then, is anyone?

Maybe I have a problem with letting go. I began this project a year ago. That's a relatively short time for me. (I held onto Fouling Out for eight years.) The short story collection has been exciting to write with so many characters and predicaments that ranged from funny to serious to mundane (yet quirky). I have enjoyed shifting gears so quickly from one story to the next and going back months later, only to be surprised by a particular story's ending.

Perhaps I should see a therapist about this letting go issue. It could be big! Of course, I could not afford the sessions which could continue to months, if not years. What if it all comes down to a repressed childhood incident when I was forced to attend a church games night in lieu of watching a rerun of "The Love Boat"? It's possible. "But Charo's guest starring. She's gonna break Captain Stubing's heart. And Florence Henderson's on, too. Mrs. Brady!" (To underscore how much I am delaying sending off my manuscript, I found a Charo-Florence Henderson clip on YouTube--after I'd paired them in my blog. You can YouTube anything! Take a peek. Perfect your cuchi-cuchi!)

Without the therapist, I will have to work through my letting go problem. I understand the issue on a surface level. Why would I want the fun to stop? I have to trust that I will have at least as much fun on my next writing project.

After the grant applications.

It's been a year since I began the project

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