“Unfinished Business”

A long time ago, last spring it was, I sent one of my short stories off to a magazine that I thought might be interested. Then I mostly forgot all about it.

It’s an old story of mine, begun more than twenty years ago. I consider it a literary effort. It had gone through various incarnations and titles, beginning as “Tom’s Death” and then “A Dark Beast” and finally “Unfinished Business.” They say that ghosts haunt the earth because they have some unfinished business. While there are no supernatural elements to my story, my character is haunted by something he felt he left unfinished. Nor could I leave the story alone all those years.

As I said, I mostly forgot about the submission, and when I did think of it, I didn’t imagine it had been sent in so long ago.

Today in my email I received an update on my submission. It contained a link to the magazine’s website, and when I logged in (astonishingly, I remembered my password!) I saw that my status had been updated from “pending” to “accepted.”

I think that means they’ve accepted my story for publication. Neither the email nor the link gave any more information. It’s as though there is still some unfinished business about this story. I’ve sent an email to the magazine’s general address — it’s all I could find — so I hope to hear something more complete soon. Should it be a confirmation of good news, I’ll be sure to share it with you.

I happened to go to my email because I was having trouble submitting a different short story, “Diaspora,” to a different magazine. I wanted to write to this other magazine to ask them if they were having trouble with their submission mechanism, which had kept rejecting my input. That’s when I found my cryptic good news. (I never sent the email to that second magazine because I figured out why my submission was being rejected. I did not have the .doc extension on my file. That fixed, the submission went through. Perhaps some good news will come of this too.)

Update: I received an email from the editor telling me my story will appear online this month and be published in their upcoming anthology. The magazine is Midwest Literary Magazine. The link will take you there, but I’ll try to give you a specific link to my story when it appears.

And I want to give a shout out to Duotrope’s Digest, which has once again given me the lead that led to publication.

Further Update: I first wrote about this story in this post.

Explore posts in the same categories: short stories


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2 Comments on ““Unfinished Business””

  1. Beth Says:


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