Stephanie Burgis
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Hurray! What a way to start the weekend: I just found out that my short story "Accident of Birth" has sold to Lone Star Stories! This is a particularly satisfying sale. I always loved this story, but I knew from the very beginning (and the very first critiques) that it didn't quite work when I first wrote it...but I couldn't figure out how to make it better, and I still loved the feel of the story and the way it had worked in my head...until two days ago!

On Thursday I re-read it in full for the first time in a long, long time, and I had a revelation. The beginning didn't work at all, and it was throwing off the whole story, leading people to expect something that never came. It was an opening that I'd loved--such a cool voice, such a cool idea--so I'd kept it even though I'd kinda known, in the back of my mind, that it didn't fit with the rest of the piece or even quite make sense.... until Thursday. On Thursday, reading it with a fresh eye, I slashed the first page and started the story where it really should begin. And--tada!--all of a sudden, it felt different. It stopped being an "almost works" story, and became a real story. A story I could love without feelings of deep-seated insecurity and nagging worry. A story I could be proud of. I sent it off an hour later, and for the first time ever, I wasn't worrying to myself that maybe it wasn't ready yet, maybe it wasn't quite right....

It's going to be published in the October/November issue of Lone Star Stories, and I can't wait. It really is one of my favorite stories that I've written. And it's even more satisfying, sometimes, to figure out how to fix a story than to get it right the first time. A wonderful "aha!" moment. And better yet when it sells!

In non-writing news, I went back to work yesterday, hurray hurray. Still not feeling great, but oh well...colds never go away in less than a week. And I'm feeling so happy right now that I don't care.

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