“The Lonely Road”

And then, out of the blue, the acceptance came!

Over the weekend an email popped up in my box from Penduline Press. They’ve accepted my story “The Lonely Road” and it will be coming up on their site later this month!

I’m proud of this story. I think it may be the best realized of my Fathers and Sons stories. It’s one of those that I read through and can’t think of a single word I would change. Penduline Press had put out a call for stories with a theme of “Bound.” While I think themes can be helpful for targeting submissions, they are also generally vague enough to let anything or nothing apply. My story features a character who is struggling with some of the bonds in his life — at least that’s how I pitched it. And I guess the editors saw it that way too. This is the first of my Fathers and Sons stories to see print.

The stories in this cycle, however, have all been evolving as I’ve come to understand the universe they’re set in, so occasionally I will tinker with this or that detail in one of them to make it comply with the back story or some future event or character development or whatever. In a way, I imagine that whatever I’ve had to say about that universe in “The Lonely Road” is now carved in stone since it’s (going to be) in print. So it becomes the stillpoint in that universe, and however I tell the stories going forward will have to comply with whatever I’ve said in this story. Or not. I suppose I’m over stressing this.

I spent a good deal of time withdrawing the story from simultaneous submissions elsewhere. I hadn’t realized how many places I’d sent it.

Once the story is up, I’ll post a link.

Explore posts in the same categories: Fathers and Sons, Humble efforts, short stories

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4 Comments on ““The Lonely Road””

  1. Pete Says:

    Congrats on that acceptance, Paul! I would love to read the F&S stories whenever or however they’re available. I’ve been pondering a series of novellas set in a small Midwestern town, with the ultimate goal of being just a fraction as successful with them as Kent Haruf has been with his novels set in the fictional Holt, Colorado. (His fifth Holt novel, Benediction, is just out now.) I highly recommend his books if you haven’t read them already.

  2. Annam Says:


  3. LauraMaylene Says:

    That’s so great — congratulations!

  4. Teri Says:

    Congratulations!!! We love some good news around here. 🙂

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