Identity Theory has published my story, “What Coy Said,” from my collection, Cocktails.
Whenever a litmag/journal/site/publication/entity publishes one of my stories, I wait at least three months then post the published story to this site. In July, Knee-Jerk Magazine published “Dropping Back to Punt.” Now it is included in the Previously Published Stories sidebar.
Another story of mine that was published three months ago (in addition to “Extinguisher”) was “The Lock.” It’s posted this morning to the “Previously Published Stories” sidebar.
“The Lock” was published in NOON and was phenomenally edited by Diane Williams, who runs that magazine. The original version, though it was not long, was about five times longer than the version she published. She took that original version, stripped most of it away, rearranged what was left, and said, “Why don’t we try it this way?” I said, “Okay.” It was as though she ran a body shop, I drove a school bus in for a tune-up, and drove out a week later with a Formula 1 racer.
Two new pieces are posted this morning in the “Previously Published Stories” sidebar. Last year the editors at Salt Hill contacted writers who had previously had work published in the magazine–mine was “Tossing Baby to the Tiger,” published in Salt Hill 14–and asked us if we would submit new work to be considered for their anniversary issue, Salt Hill 30. I sent something and they rejected it. They asked me to try again and I sent “Extinguisher” and they accepted it. They also asked me if I could write a little something about the story and how it was written. I did and that is “Unpacking the Object.” The two pieces are understandably published together here.
Litro, A Little London Literary Magazine published my story, “Lost Things and Missing Persons,” today in their Story Sunday. You can find it here if you like: http://www.litro.co.uk/
The editors changed a couple spellings to reflect British spelling. They also incited me to tighten up the ending of the story. Endings are probably my weakest spot as a writer. Several of my published stories needed to have their endings fixed after acceptance but before publication.
“Yttat” was published in the Fall 2012 issue of Mayday Magazine. I posted the link to that earlier this week; today I posted the story to the “Previously Published Stories” sidebar on this website.
I knew the story was going to be published by Mayday but lost track of when it was due to come out. It’s possible it was published several months ago. I didn’t know it had been published until this week.
It was published with typos. How did they get there? They were in the original submission Mayday accepted. Of course I thought I had adequately spell-checked and proofed the story before I sent it out. Of course I feel as any writer would feel upon making such mistakes (which I was not aware of until today).
The copy published here has had all its mistakes corrected–unless I missed any.
Mayday Magazine published my story, “Yttat,” in their Fall 2012 issue. Here’s the link to the contents page:
I’ll probably add the story to the “Previously Published Stories” sidebar this coming weekend, but you can read it through the link on the Mayday contents page any time you like. If you like.
“Road Rave” was published three months ago by Fox Chase Review. You can read it there at http://www.foxchasereview.org/12AW/TetmanCallis.html, or you can glance slightly to your right on your screen and see that I have added it to the “Previously Published Stories” sidebar here. Discerning readers may note that it is not placed in alphabetical order among the other stories. That is likely to change, but not today.
There is a new story posted in the “Previously Published Stories” sidebar, or menu, or whatsit. It is called “Gnats” and it was first published three months ago in Snow Monkey.
While we’re on the subject, I’ve recently had stories accepted by Fox Chase Review, Noon, and Mayday Magazine. They should all be appearing over the next eight months or so.
“Lawn” is the only story I had published in 2011. It appeared in Thema in the autumn. I have posted it today to this site, over to your right, in the “Previously Published Stories” menu, at the top and out of alphabetical order. At some future point I’ll probably nudge it down a few notches to where it might be considered to belong.
“Lawn” contains the lyrics of “Twa Corbies,” an English folk ballad first printed in 1912 in Ballads Weird and Wonderful, published by John Lane The Bodley Head (a name weird and wonderful in its own right).
It had been my plan to post my earliest published poetry this weekend, but last week I found in my archives one more previously published story I had overlooked and hadn’t posted yet. That story is “Tossing Baby to the Tiger,” originally published in 2003 by Salt Hill. It is what I posted this week. It’s much more interesting than my poetic juvenilia, which I’ll probably post next week, for I have no shame and I no longer care.
“The Usual Story” is another of the stories I initially wrote about a dozen years ago and which was published early this year in Mad Hatters’ Review. It’s the last previously-published story I have in my inventory. Next week I’ll have to post something else. Probably poetry. There was a call some weeks back from one of my three readers for some poetry.
I’ll probably post all my previously-published poetry over a three-week period. Unless I chicken out. Some of it’s pretty embarrassing. No sense hiding, though. I thought it was good enough to submit in the first place, and it got published. Not in American Poetry Review or Poetry or The New Yorker or anything like that. I should be so lucky. It all showed up in little mags, some of which have long since passed away.
The voice in “the talking french cat” came to me in a dream. I thought of writing an entire book in that voice, but I couldn’t sustain it, then it was gone. And would a reader really want to spend an entire book, even a slim volume, with that person and that voice? Madness and despair grow so quickly tiresome.
I wrote the first draft of “the talking french cat” ten or eleven years ago. It took me several more years to hammer it into shape, then Mad Hatters’ Review published it earlier this year.
Very few of the stories I’ve had published have undergone no substantial rewrite, “substantial” being a subjective term that, whatever it may mean, almost certainly means more than giving a story a “polish” (whatever that may mean). “Rag Doll” was first drafted about fifteen years before I finally got it into a shape a publisher would accept. Mad Hatters’ Review published it earlier this year, along with three other of my stories.
(And on the subject of first drafts, early this afternoon I finished the first draft of the project I’ve been working on for the past four months.)
“Grilled Cheese Sandwich with Pickles and Fries” is the result of taking a handful of ideas languishing in the workshop, mixing them together to see how they might fit, and making a prose bracelet out of them. It was published in The Writing Disorder on New Year’s Eve last year.
Usually, once I’ve published a piece, I make no more modifications to it. This is a rule I abide by strictly except for those occasions when I choose to break it.
This week I’m posting “Karen and the Dropout,” a story published in 2010 in White Whale Review. Prior to publication, Randi Shapiro, the fiction editor at WWR, emailed me that she thought there was something a little off about the ending, something she couldn’t quite put her finger on. I fiercely and in detail defended the choices I had made, and we let it go at that.
About six months later, as I was preparing “Karen and the Dropout” for inclusion in a collection of short stories, I saw that whatever it was Randi had seen and I couldn’t see, it did seem that if I cut the final five words from the story, the ending would be much tighter and significantly less wistful. So that is what I did, and that is the version I have posted to this site. You can go to the WWR site and see the previous version, but I wouldn’t. This one’s better (I emailed Randi after I made the cut, and she agreed).
“Casserole Man” was a story I wrote in the mid-90s. It took me the rest of that decade to get it right, and once I had, it was published in the now-defunct Chiron Review. That would have been around the same time (spring of 2002) I met the woman I’m now married to–or, to whom I am now married, if you prefer.
(NB–That “of” that you think should really be “off” is not a typo.)
This week I’m posting “Saved” to the Stories menu of this blog. It’s a story I wrote in the late 90s and was never quite happy with. I wrote it in first-person and sent it out, it got rejected, that’s okay, I rewrote it in third-person. I sent it out in third-person, it got rejected, but I didn’t mind, I wasn’t happy with it, I rewrote it in second-person. I sent it out, I still wasn’t happy with it, I hadn’t heard back yet, but that’s all right, I rewrote it again, in fourth-person for all I know.
Then I heard back. Gulf Coast had it and wanted to publish it, would I be so kind as to send a copy on 3.5″ floppy? Shit! Where was the version I sent them? Was I even sure which version it was? Could I ask them? Shit-shit-shit…. I dug deep into my backups, into the backups of my backups, cross-matched the file date-stamp with the database entry tracking my submissions, and sent them what I was pretty sure was the correct version. It was, and they published it in early 2002.