Last week, I turned down the opportunity to have a short story entitled “Man Up” published in an anthology.
One of my goals is to write and publish. So, why did I decline?
My story’s word count is 4300 words–the word limit for the anthology is 3000 words. I would’ve had to cut a quarter of the story’s words, which would’ve compromised it. Further, the publisher wanted me to rewrite the ending to cast it as less Christian oriented.
The publisher has a vision for their anthology, and my story, as written, didn’t fit. The positive takeaway is the publisher didn’t flat reject it but asked for changes, so it’d fit.
A publisher has every right to request changes–it’s their anthology. An author, however, has the choice to rewrite for the publisher or move on.
I chose to move on. This story is Christian-centered. Removing that removes the story’s core, the story’s heart. It changes the story so drastically that it isn’t the same story anymore. I believe in my story, so I’ll look for a market where my story fits.
I hope the anthology is very successful, and the publisher does another. I expect I’ll have something that better suits it.