the action or fact of accepting or yielding to a superior force or to the will or authority of another person.
The Act of Submission
In the last month, I have been on a submission whirlwind. I submitted some pieces to a new journal, Rad Press, finally tweaked Carolina Soul enough to submit it and submitted another piece to Soar.ForHarriet. One of my goals every year is to submit! submit! submit! Written just like that and I consider the goal accomplished if I submit to at least six different things a year. I know that six doesn’t sound like a lot but at some times it seems overwhelming. Part of that, is trying to find the right home for your writing but more than that is the actual letting go of the piece.
That yielding to another force or authority…that takes great fortitude! As a writer, I’m learning to deal with rejection and revision but the flying leap that is submitting makes my stomach clench horribly some times. Just the thought of someone taking an editing pen to something as personal as my poetry terrifies me. But such is the life.
As of now, I plan to submit more over the next month or so because I definitely want to gain more exposure but I have been sidetracked by a recent bout of illness and grading (ick). I have also been hit with an idea for a story that I can’t get rid of thanks to a Mother’s Day trip with my maternal grandmother. I promise there will be more on that in another post!
Six different things, what does that mean?
Well, for me it means retreats, residencies, journals, contests, or presses. Anything that requires me to sit down and make sure that I am submitting the right pieces for the event or publication and most importantly, pieces that reflect who I am as a writer. I try to find the best fit for my writing but I miss sometimes. Okay, a bit. One of the reasons I love blogging is because I get to control my voice. I get to rant a poem or write against whatever has popped into my crazy little world since my last post. A bit of that is lost in submitting your work to others.
As a result, I find that I don’t dedicate nearly as much time as I could doing this but every day there’s something else clamoring for my attention. I have access to a lot of sources so I can easily access databases and look through magazines but that takes time.
Is anyone else out there actively shopping their work? How’s your process going? Are you tracking submissions because I have gotten horrible at that entire process? Any suggestions on how to make he whole thing easier?