Apologies for the lack of posts recently. I wish I could say it was because I was busily working on a great new writing project, but I’m afraid it’s my usual summer dip when hay making and horses take priority.
But that’s not to say that there’s not been a bit of scribbling going on in the background. In fact, one piece in particular has been occupying a considerable amount of my writing and re-writing time, and that is a story I originally sent to Woman’s Weekly back in May. The story itself started life last year when I had an idea for a scenario, but couldn’t decide from which character’s point of view it should be written. I experimented with several different voices before settling on one which seemed right for the piece, but the storyline refused to develop, so I put the whole thing away for a while to concentrate on other projects. In the spring, I re-read the beginning, liked it and wanted to push it to a conclusion. I finished a first draft, ran it past one of my local writers’ groups for feedback, and made some amends – then sent it off.
The good people at WW said, “We like it, but…” They listed a few things they had issues with, and asked me to take another look. So I took another look and sent it back. The amends I made threw up some more queries from the WW team, so back to the keyboard I went.
This time, I made some more fundamental changes, and ran the re-written piece past the long-suffering people at Writers’ group yet again.
WW said there were still some problems. But I was impressed that at this stage they didn’t simply say, “Do you know what, Jenny, just forget it!”
I waited a bit, pondering various amends and additions as I stacked hay or mucked out! I concentrated on the end section of the story where the main problems seemed to lie. The thing was, despite all the extra work, I loved my characters – I wanted them to make it, to exist on the printed page.
I developed, re-wrote and amended. By now the story had expanded considerably. I worried it might now be too long and unwieldy. But there was nothing obvious to cut. So I sent it off again.
By now I had convinced myself that, despite the faith of the WW team, and all my work on it, this story was fundamentally flawed. I fretted about other issues they might raise with the new, new version. In my mind, I think I’d almost written it off.
So it was with absolute joy that I received an acceptance email this week! Although it’s been a bit of a slog, the story has definitely benefited from the extra work – so a big thank you to Clare and the team at WW for asking for the re-writes, not simply rejecting it at the outset.
To say I’m looking forward to seeing it in print would be an understatement!