Good news comes in threes

I’ve finally given myself a weekend off, where no writing has happened and the only strenuous activities were a flurry of leafleting, a Doors Open Day trip to Soutra Aisle which gave me a billion new writing ideas and hosting a referendum-covering journalist at our house whose taste in Youtube videos and Cards Against Humanity hands were rather excellent.

The real reason I finally had some proper rest is that I had an uncommonly lucky week for good news.

The first surprise was a missive containing the magic words ‘we’d like to invite you to send in your full electronic manuscript for our consideration’, which I’m still pinching myself over. While I was pinching myself, I re-read a short story I’d sent away to the Scottish Book Trust in June and idly wondered whether it had been read.

Then on Friday afternoon I got an email about that story. Turns out it found its way through the longlist and shortlist and has been accepted for the Stories of Home collection, given out during Book Week. Which means that on the 24th of November I officially become a published author. A published author, I tell you. I mentioned to Pete that the only way the week could get better was if I heard something about the other short story I submitted to Radio 4 in July.

Guess what the next email was, later that night. Admittedly, it wasn’t an acceptance per se, more of an apology that due to wading through over a thousand entries they’ve still not narrowed things down, I’m on their mailing list now and ‘no news is good news’.

Now, the short description of my reaction to this triple whammy of good news was something like this:

THIS IS ALL A DREAM AND I'M GOING TO SIT ON THE SOFA EMITTING HIGH-PITCHED NOISES OF DELIGHT

THIS IS ALL A DREAM AND I’M GOING TO SIT ON THE SOFA EMITTING HIGH-PITCHED NOISES OF DELIGHT

But I’m aware that even mentioning any of this will jinx it to oblivion, which is why I am duty-bound to include my annual reminder of this comic, which is true regardless of how good the news is:

It's like this, in my head, EVERY DAY.

It’s like this, in my head, EVERY DAY.

Clearly, though, the antidote to this voice is just to write more things and keep up the momentum. So, if I don’t fall over by Friday morning after staying up watching the referendum Swingometer go nuts, I’ll see if I can’t prod away at the three (!) short stories I have on the boil and get one online. Who knows- maybe my good luck charm from Shamrokon will work for a longer streak…

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