Someone who shall remain nameless (hi, Mom) forgot to get me breakfast the other day. So I didn’t have a whole lot of sympathy when she started sniffing about a well-worn Christmas writing contest going the way of the Dodo.
“I’ve been writing and submitting entries to that site’s annual writing contest for years,” whined Her Mom-ness. “I’ve even won a couple times. So what’s up with The Final Shutdown?”
“Now you know how I feel?” I wanted to say. I wagged my tail instead. Offered to share my favorite treat with her. She wasn’t interested. Even though these goodies are “100% natural. Non-GMO.” Made “with real mixed berries.” Okay, so it was pre-chewed. But only a little.
“Mom? Mom!” I said, trying to get her back on track. You know how writers are. “Stop that whining already. I’m trying to think here!”
Now. Where was I?
Anyway, Mom kinda didn’t know what to do after being thrown for that wet cat. I’ll let her narrate in her own words (sometimes there’s just no accounting for taste.)
Wanting to get a running start on the Christmas story contest season in 2017, I wrote a seasonal story in the fall of last year, as the Indian summer of September slid into the cool kindliness of October. When I sat down to submit it, I found that the site was no longer running the contest. “We hope to be back next year,” the site admin replied to my inquiry. “Please feel free to submit your story in 2018.”
I dug up my 2017 story, One Cold Night, dusted it off and polished it up for submission to the 2018 Christmas story contest. To my dismay, I discovered that not only was the contest not going on this year, but the entire web site had been scrubbed. Closed. History. Gone.
“That was a lot of work for nothing,” I thought.
So Her Mom-ness decided to do something else. “Just because that site no longer exists doesn’t mean I or my story have to follow suit.”
So she spiffed up her story. Ignored the contest-imposed 800 word limit. Added about 600 words. “Now it’s a micro story,” she chirped. “I’ll just publish it myself.”
As in, if a door closes, find another way in. Or open a window.
This right after I gently reminded her about breakfast. With the subtlety of a ton of dog chow. Priorities, ya know?