Got an email from Debby Vetter, my Cricket editor, sending along the page proofs for “The Red String” and letting me know it’s scheduled to be published in next year’s February issue. Hurray! She also mentioned that this is the last story Cricket has in inventory from me and encouraged me to submit more.
Aside from the thrill of having an editor, y’know, invite me to submit something, it occurs to me that I’d been so focused on the novel effort for the last couple years that I simply haven’t been writing much children’s fiction. And I’ve missed it. Soon as I started poking around in that neglected corner of my creative process, got an immediate story idea, complete with title—”The Girl Who Drew Cats”—as well as a solid opening underway.
So I’m setting aside “The Art of Victory When the Game is All the World” for a bit. Probably good to put a little distance there anyway. “Art of Victory,” in addition to threatening to turn into a novella, is feeling a tad overextended and expansive, both focus- and story-wise. Couple weeks might be exactly what I need to regroup and rein things back under control with it.
Congrats for having a set near-future publication date!
And... what j_cheney said. I'm pretty sure they've had "The Red String" since around the time I first discovered your stories, which I think was 2005 because "Storyteller's Wife" was one of the first stories of yours I read. At least they eventually published all the others during the intervening years.
Thanks! And yeah, Cricket has had this one for a while. Made a flurry of sales to them in a short time period which resulted in them being a bit glutted with my stuff for a while. They've been publishing two to three of my stories a year, but it still made for some long lead times.