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How do you know when it's time?

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Old 09-14-2017, 08:20 PM
JesseK1213 (Offline)
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Default How do you know when it's time?


How do you know when you're ready to start submitting works for publication?

I suppose the easiest answer is after the submission process - when you invariably wait the weeks/months until some editor either gives you the nod... or they don't. If your story gets selected, hey, you were ready; if not, you weren't.

By that logic, waiting around seems like a bullshit kind of indecision, doesn't it? After all, you won't know if you were ready or not until you open that email with trembling fingers.

But you want to give your best work, or your best work so far, for fear of the rejection slip and the inevitable depression that will follow.

I suppose you should be writing while you wait.

But goddamn waiting sucks.

How do you know when it's time to take the plunge?

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Old 09-15-2017, 04:58 PM
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I think when you are writing at a publishable level, you know it.

When I played music in a band that was really good, we all knew it.

So I guess what I'm saying in a sense, is that if you have to ask the question, you're not ready.

This doesn't mean you can't get published now. There are magazines online that publish all levels of writing, from crap to brilliant.

When you write, you write to satisfy yourself. If you know you're ready, then you're ready.
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Old 09-15-2017, 05:28 PM
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i agree with brian. if it's addicting to even you, start selling! if you're curiously concerned about your own writing, not sure if it's that good, you're not all too ready. sit on it. take your time. readiness is about writing what you'd shell out to read. kudos!
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Old 09-17-2017, 06:21 AM
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I think what you need early on is a kind of sanity check. That's the reason people join forums or writer's groups or reluctantly show their initial efforts to family or friends. You just want to know if you have any talent at all or if you're fooling yourself.

Beyond that -- yeah, you have to rely on your own instincts and trial and error through submitting.

Personally, I never have been all that excited about getting published in some obscure literary magazine or e-zine -- although I'm reasonably sure I could.

There's a top tier -- but I don't think my stories really measure up.
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Old 10-01-2017, 12:29 PM
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Originally Posted by Myers View Post
I think what you need early on is a kind of sanity check. That's the reason people join forums or writer's groups or reluctantly show their initial efforts to family or friends. You just want to know if you have any talent at all or if you're fooling yourself.
That's the best way I've ever heard it described - a sanity check. And I suppose it's relevant to any kind of art form. You want to know if it's good beyond your own interpretation.

Maybe that's the trap, though. I know I've written so many stories (some of them posted here) I'm doubtful about, where I'm thinking, "Hey, if someone else thinks it's good, maybe it is good." But like Brian said, if you have to ask the question...

For me, getting published somewhere is the ultimate goal. I don't care if it's a crappy little magazine or online publication, I just want my name on a story. Maybe it's validation. Maybe it's vanity. Probably a heap of both.

But there's no rush. No time limit.

Just a whole lot of curiosity.
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Old 10-01-2017, 06:38 PM
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Originally Posted by JesseK1213 View Post
"Hey, if someone else thinks it's good, maybe it is good." But like Brian said, if you have to ask the question...
You also have to consider the the comments and the source.

Comments like "Held my attention all the way through!" etc. or some other cursory stamp of approval don't mean much.

And it helps to know that the person commenting is a decent writer. Not a requirement -- but it lends some credibility.

But you probably know that already -- so in the end, it just comes down to your own gut feelings.
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