This letter is from the first and the last time I answered a call for submissions.
As I put the finishing touches on The Submission today, I thought about those two sentences – “the bio” – that go on the cover letter. This is usually where you read about all of the places where the author’s work has been published and the awards they have received. Somehow citing the e-book I was commissioned to write for an ocean safety website didn’t quite seem like the appropriate publishing achievement to mention.
I search my memory banks for something literary, some kind of something to put with my name. And then I remember that William Saroyan Story Writing contest my senior year in high school. That $100 savings bond. Now that could be worthy! It was an award after all, literary at that. Never mind it came circa 1991.
As you can see, clearly posted here, I still have the congratulatory letter as my keepsake. A memento of my prize. Maybe this too, will be my first and last (better not lose it).
Win or lose, no matter. I’m practicing submission. Of course, winning’s always nice, but it’s not the point. I shall submit to The Submission. Bow in gratitude for all it taught me, mark my envelope appropriately and include a cover letter. Submit.
I will not mention the Saroyan award. Not even as a clever joke. I’ll save my bragging rights for you.
4 thoughts on “Awarded Submission”
Here’s a fun fact.
Aram Saroyan (William’s son) is an old friend from our Bolinas days. He had two daughers with the Bolinasonian names of “Strawbery” and “Cream.”
Always be grateful that Nancy and John didn’t name you “Orange.”
“Orange you glad they didn’t name you after the cash crop.”
No need for Bolinas originality when your German heritage gives you Dofflemyer.
It will not be the last. Good on ya for submitting to the submission of the submission. I had a good little private chuckle about the ebook- if we had looked up, we would have seen the ax hovering over our heads as we sifted through pdf pages. Thank god it dropped and set us free!
No ax in my version. I was producing my commissioned swan song. May not belong in the two bio sentences to define me on a cover page. but it was still a labor I left lovingly behind. Thanks for working on it with me! Imua!