Since I have rather unsuccessfully been beating my head against a wall trying to generate income (don't they hide 100 dollar bills in walls?), I thought I might have a go at trying to get something published.
(I just shared this -what I thought brilliant line- with the Willow, and she said, "what, do you think you are smart?" and I repeated the lines and explained the metaphor, and she thought if you beat your head against the wall your brains would splatter out and if you are smart they would be worth money. Gross! ok... teenagers)
I suppose I was sort of inspired by a book I found in a free pile-maybe this should have been a sign-. A compilation of shorts by a woman from Vermont. Some of them were posts she had had published in local weeklys.
I pulled out my -also found in a free pile- 1993 Writer's handbook, which I had never opened, and started doing some research.
I wrote 650 words on the current ice conditions in a quaint little narrative telling about an adventure involving the Willow and myself last Sunday. I knew the deadline for the local weekly here was Tuesday, so I laborously went over and over my composition and flew to my search engine looking for the contact info to dash it off to the editors of the weekly and a local daily.
I went for the weekly first, dutifully filling out a form briefly describing my intent, then fired off a copy to the daily. By the time I got back to my inbox, I had a response from the weekly asking me to fire them off the copy. WOW. I sent it off and went about doing some errands, thinking things were looking pretty good!
When I got home, I checked my email and found a response from the weekly. Apparently there is a weekly of the same name on the other side of the country, and they don't have any ice there. HAHAHAH!
The editor was very nice, and I was grateful to find out my error, so I quickly thanked him and fired off an inquiry to the real local weekly.
While I was waiting for responses from MAINE papers, the editor of the weekly on the West coast and I exchanged a few delightful short emails. He even said my piece was "nicely written".
Then I got a polite but firm rejection from the local weekly. I wasn't even sure they had read the piece. I slept on it, then fired off the piece again as a submission pitch, citing my google publishing numbers and views, and even daring to quote the editor's on the West Coast's compliment on my submission. I was pitching for a guest column.
I was more favorably received- a guest columnist would not receive any compensation, however, and they would like me to be sort of specific to my town, and submit a few more examples of my work.
Today I went through this blog and picked a couple of posts and sent them along...if I get accepted, it will be a bit different than my anonymous gig on here, and I still won't be getting paid...but maybe I will make some connections and at least have something else to put on my writing resume in the future. Or, maybe this will turn into a paid gig.
Or the household will be going hungry.
Say your prayers for me, I think I might be heading in a good direction.