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American Past Time
A novel by Len Joy

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Monday, August 10, 2009

Acceptance & Rejection

At first I had labeled this entry Rejection & Acceptance because in both writing and sports there is a lot more “failure” than success. But it is those successes that keep us in the game, so I’m going with the positive slant.

Last week, while I was at Squaw Valley, I had two short pieces accepted for publication. That is an alltime personal best for one week. And in the last thirty days I have had four acceptances. I’d like to think that it was because I’ve reached a new level of competence in my writing, but two of those stories were written over a year ago, but hadn’t found any love until now. Before the flood of acceptances, I had gone over a year without an acceptance.

I keep track of all my submissions via Duotrope. According to my Duotrope Submissions Tracker between February 2006 and August 2009, I submitted
42 different stories to
119 different publications (many stories I rewrote and resubmit two or three times) for total of
352 different submissions of which
14 were accepted for publication. That comes out to a
4.0 % Acceptance rate; A month ago that rate was 2.9 %.

Even though those numbers are low, it’s enough encouragement to keep me going. Just like with the triathlon, I’ve never reached the goal that I set for myself in a race, but I’ve usually been able to take something away from each race that makes me want to race again.

Workout: Today I was fitted for a new bike which I will report on later, but before the fitting I thought it would be good to get in a swim workout. The temperature in Evanston has been in the high 80s, but that doesn’t mean anything to Lake Michigan. The wind can blow the warm water over to Michigan,or Wisconsin I guess, because this morning as I walked to the beach I was met by a guy in a wetsuit who told me he had put his wrist in the water and decided it was too cold.

I thought that was sort of wimpy of him, I mean how cold can the water temp be in the middle of August? Well, pretty goddamn cold. I'm guessing about 62 degrees. I swam about ten yards before and my head felt like it was being pounded by a really cold hammer. I stopped and treaded water for a minute and tried again. I made it a little farther, and I controlled my breathing, didn’t hyperventilate and tried to get my head to accept the cold. But my head refused to cooperate. The rest of my body was okay, cold, but okay, but I was getting a serious headache and decided this was not going to help me get ready for Tuscaloosa with its 84 degree water temp. So I quit after twenty minutes.

Weight: 187.1

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