bioStories is a serious, professional, and highly regarded literary magazine. They have published my creative nonfiction essay, “Disappearance,” in their current edition. “Disappearance” occurs at the intersection of hard work, social class, racial animus, misogyny, and redemption. I hope you will take a few minutes to read the essay on the bioStories website. Stick around afterward and see what other treasures this little gem of a magazine has to offer.
“Disappearance” will be available for a few weeks at this URL: http://biostories.com/recent-essays/. After that time, the editors will move to the story to an archive where you can access it indefinitely. I will update the web address at that time.
I’ve worked very hard over the last year to get my essays published in literary magazines and other publications. When I started last October, my goal was to get five publications in two years. The competition for space in these magazines is intense and I didn’t expect to get as much attention as I have.
Knowing that publication is a numbers game–I expected that for every 50 or 100 submissions, I might get two or three essays out there into the public. I began submitting six or so essays to magazines until I had 40 submissions floating out there. When a rejection came my way, I submitted to another magazine. When an editor accepted one of my essays, I submitted again to other magazines the total number of publications I had to notify that the essay had been published by someone else. In this way, I kept 25 to 40 submissions in the works all the time.
So far, that effort has paid off in twelve publications since January 1, 2018. Most of the magazines have been solid second-tier publications–good venues but not quite on the order of Agni, Missouri Review, or Chariton Review. Still, I’m very proud to have worked with James Beach at Wood Coin, Mark Leichliter at bioStories, and Christine Parker at Garo (the publication of the Rocky Mountain Land Library). These are incredible publications and should belong in the top-tier. Other great literary outlets that published my work this year have been New Letters, JONAHmagazine, Indiana Voice Journal, Red Fez, Writing Disorder, daCunha, and Furious Gazelle.
In the spring, Gray’s Sporting Journal (The Magazine for Discerning Sportsmen) will feature an essay called “Trout Under the Stars.” One of my proudest publications will be “The River’s Magic” in Traverse, the journal of the Center for Great Plains Studies at Emporia State University.
I hope to keep up this kind of effort for the next year. I have already selected several essays I will submit in the coming months to such top-line publications as New Letters, Georgia Review, and Missouri Review.
In the end, I wonder where all this energy is taking me. Except for Gray’s, none of the magazines pay anything. I don’t know how many people have read my published work. I don’t know that I’ve gained any notoriety or reputation from my effort. But it still feels good to see someone else publish my work, even if it doesn’t bring me one iota of return. The point is that I keep writing, practicing, and thinking. I keep challenging myself and find satisfaction in meeting that challenge.
None of this would have been possible without support from readers like you. Running this blog and devoting it to 1,000- to 2,000-word essays has been a driving force in my life for the last several years. I have a small cadre of regular readers and a large, select group of returning readers. I hope you will keep reading, commenting, and sending me your thoughts.
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In the meantime, I hope you will return and celebrate with me the daily events, trends, and concepts and universal human emotions I try to feature on this website. I always rejoice in comments, criticisms, and thoughts you have about my work. Please don’t hesitate to call 816-896-4746 or write me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I’d love to hear from you.