For every writer, news of an acceptance is a major event. To be published after months of labor, usually alone and without any recognition, is a welcome and necessary validation for any writer, who now becomes an author, given the authorization of publication.
No matter how much I have published over the years--from short reviews and articles to books--I still get a special thrill when a publisher says, "Yes." Or as happened yesterday, when the editor of the Provo Canyon Review wrote to me, "we love your story and would be very pleased to publish it in our next issue."
If they are pleased, I am very pleased because I am new to fiction writing, and the story in question, "Losing It," is a comic piece loosely modeled on the work of James Thurber. It concerns an absent-minded high school history teacher, who has a conflict with his principal--and by extension the state of education in America today. I never knew, even from the three seasoned readers who critiqued it, if it was really good, genuinely amusing and believable.
Now the self-doubt can fade and I can happily anticipate seeing the article appear in the Review, probably next week online at www.theprovocanyonreview.net.
Yet, for me, getting the acceptance is what matters, the actual publication being almost secondary. Almost.
Here, to whet your appetite, is the opening sentence, which I worked on for some time (maybe it will motivate you to look up the Provo Canyon Review and read the whole story and have some laughs):
On a sparkling Florida afternoon in winter, as George Eliot Craine was stirring his spaghetti sauce, with his back to the open window over the kitchen sink, his pants fell down, along with his shorts, and it took it took him a full minute to put down his wooden spoon, wipe his hands, and retrieve his clothes from the floor--time enough for his wife, Martha, who was unloading groceries from the car, to see, beneath his apron strings, his naked butt.