Those of you who have read, Unfettered may remember my story, ‘A Wise Perch and a Warm Hearth,’ but it had a very different beginning.  It was originally a short horror piece, written for a submission call for Edgar Allan Poe themed stories at Zoetic Press.

It was rejected, and sometime later there was a call for Poe inspired erotica from a different publisher. I believed my story had a few good sentences, so I took the bones of the original and re-wrote it as a much longer, erotic piece. It was rejected there too, but published in my short story collection, Unfettered. My editor at Clarendon House said he was enthralled when he read it, which was nice to hear. So, this is where this post gets interesting.

The editors at Zoetic Press contacted me with a proposal. They said, while they didn’t choose A Wise Perch and A Warm Hearth for publication, it was very highly regarded among the editors, and it had stuck with them. They wanted to critique it on their podcast “The Literary Whip” where they talk about pieces that were good, but for whatever reason didn’t make it to publication.

That’s great I thought, except, it was very different story to the one they were familiar with.  Zoetic Press decided they’d offer an in-depth (but kind), critique of both stories, a first for them! It was almost a year between rewrites and I feel I’ve grown as a writer, but I’m definitely not perfect, and I appreciate any feedback I can get from good editors.

It’s a great episode, it’s laugh-out-loud funny in places and definitely worth a listen. Even though the editors are critiquing my work, I still felt a little bit like a superstar. So, if you’re keen to see where I sucked (*cringes* – my beta reader will also cringe, lol) and where I was awesome, check it out on The Literary Whip.