The Heartbreak of the Story That Can’t Quite Find a Home

I went ahead and self-published The Bearer on Thursday.  Part of me wonders if I should’ve held off a little longer and sent it to a few more of the pro markets.  But, of the remaining ones, most are either closed or currently so behind I don’t know how long they’d take.

(That’s kind of what I hate with subbing to the markets.  If I subbed a 5,000 word story to all the pro markets that could take it, I could have a story out on sub for probably two years.  And that’s not even trying semi-pro.)

Plus, I just couldn’t bring myself to send this particular story out again.  It’s come so close so many times.

(And with GREAT markets.  The first market that really liked it would’ve paid me about $2,400 for it!)

I know.  That should mean I’d be eager to submit it somewhere else.  (If for no other reason than to build up a stack of “please send more” responses.)  But I seem to have the exact opposite reaction.

Because with a story that comes so close each time, I actually send it out with hope.  And, as Seth Godin said, “The stressful part is the hoping.”

It sucks to send a story out thinking it will place this time and have that hope dashed over and over again.  (And as I went further down my list of possible markets, I actually had a few form rejections.  From markets that I thought would love it, which threw me even more.)

Of course, now the poor story is just going to drown in the vast expanse of self-published books.  But at least I know that’s going to happen.  It can stop breaking my heart now.

About M. H. Lee

M.H. Lee is a speculative fiction writer currently residing in Colorado whose stories are sometimes dark, sometimes funny, sometimes darkly funny, but hopefully always thought-provoking and entertaining.
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