October 6th, 2006

The Freelance Life (if only every day were like this one)

“I am pleased to tell you that your work has been accepted for publication….”


Is there a more glorious phrase in all of written or spoken English? (Okay, yes, there is—but this is a blog about writing. So the answer is no.)


After a week of very dreary mail indeed, today I opened a suspiciously formal envelope (read: not my SASE) from Ligourian to discover that a piece I’d submitted on spec (after they’d asked to see it in March) has at last been accepted. It’s particularly wonderful since I have pitched and pitched and pitched this piece to no avail. (Although a Seven Sisters editor did call me AT HOME to discuss the query. I am literally almost not exaggerating when I say my hands were quivering so with excitement that I could scarcely hold the receiver. She said she’d get back to me, though, and never did. Go figure.)


Oh—but perhaps there is, after all, a more glorious phrase than “Your work has been accepted for publication.” That one was in the other envelope—a suspiciously formal letterheaded envelope from Highlights—with a window, yet, where I could read my very own name and address.


And that phrase would be, “As a courtesy, we are enclosing our check.”


In May 2005, Highlights ran my story about aviation pioneer Glenn L. Martin (if you’re ever in the neighborhood, you can visit his crypt at Fairhaven Cemetery in Santa Ana. Fun stuff!). Since then, it’s been requested as a reprint twice, and both times, lovely, lovely Highlights has notified me of the request AND sent me a check. I’ve made three times my original payment for this little piece, which is gratifying, considering the ungodly amount of research it required.


Plus it thrills me just a little, in only a slightly sadistic way, to think of all the little children across the country who are going to read excepts of my story and then have to answer horrific multiple choice questions about it. 

As if that's not enough, I just discovered a package on my doorstep from National Geographic KIDS--and discovered that my fun (it's okay for me to say it--it really is fun) story about animal ghosts is on the COVER.


Friday really is the best day of the week, isn’t it??