Friday, January 14, 2022

A Nice Surprise

 My short story, "Lizzie Noel," will be published by Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine. I'm simply thrilled. I had a story published there many years ago--"The Family Rose"--which was subsequently picked up by two anthologies, Death on the Veranduh, and Murder to Music

My agent, Phyllis Westberg, wasn't very enthusiastic about "Lizzie Noel," and my husband didn't like it at all. So, I never submitted it, although I thought they were both wrong. 

Besides, Ellery Queen had turned down a couple of stories after "The Family Rose," was published. 

Last July I re-read the story and quite liked it. I always had. I sent it July 20th and it took forever for the staff to read it. When I checked on it last month, I was told they were just now getting to the July submissions. When they did, they sent the contract with the acceptance letter. 

I was elated! I had another story that I submitted yesterday. It will be interesting to see if they read this one faster because they bought another recently. No one has seen this one. Phyllis loved short stories, and everything went through the agency except for the articles I did for

A couple of years ago Folio Literary Management bought Harold Ober Associates. Phyllis Westberg retired, and Claudia Cross is my wonderful new agent. 

This week I've been thinking about an older shelved manuscript that I believe has become more marketable. It might not be a good idea to interrupt my thinking on the mystery I'm currently writing. On the other hand, I'm finished with the first draft of the mystery, the story line is there. Perhaps I can work on the mystery in the morning and tackle the historical novel in the afternoon. The historical doesn't require any more research. It's been polished and polished. But it's too long. 

Through the marvelous tutelage I received from Barbara Peters and Annette Rogers at Poisoned Pen Press, I became a better writer. If I go through the historical novel again, I'll bet I find plenty to cut. I'll start with a global search for words ending in "ing." And about a jillion other little things that need spiffed up.

With my first ever manuscript at PPP the number of times I used the word "just" just drove Annette crazy. But I just couldn't help myself. 

I envied Barbara's outdoor bravery in her blog. I have hamstring tendonitis right now and will start physical therapy. My temperament is ideal for lying around, so I appreciated Doug Skelton's post. 

It turned out that I don't now and have never had Covid. My home test was a very faint false positive. December was a bleak month. Two friends were killed as pedestrians in separate accidents, and I have a nephew in ICU with Covid who has been intubated for about five weeks. 

Like my other Type M buddies, I'm tip-toeing a little warily into the New Year. I'm grateful for unexpected breaks and praying for families of friends who dealing with unexpected tragedies. 

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