The internal drama of waiting. I woke up this morning and I thought about a couple of first draft stories I wrote in Decemeber. I have some concepts for a couple more, but the stories aren't fully fleshed out in my mind, not enough for me to put them down on paper yet. So I revise. I work on the other stories.
But what about the stories I sent to the Lit Mags? As I sit there in front of my laptop cutting and revising the sentences in front of my eyes, my mind drifts to the stories making circulation with the Lit Mags. I wish there was a way to ignore the thoughts of possibly getting rejected. And there's nothing I can do. So I focus on the next story or think about up coming classes. But am I good enough? I can write, that's for certain. I do it everyday, and I've gotten published, but... Am I good enough? How far will my writing go? What kind of writing career will I have? How talented am I? Am I talented enough to compete, but not talented enough to be a great? The "Greats", right? That's the game. We all want to be a "Great" writer, like Hemingway or Faulkner or Marquez. Someone who has a greater influence on the field of literature, the field that we all love, adore, and worship with every word that we write every morning at five a.m. sharp. Am I good enough?
There is no way for me to answer that question, no way for any of us to answer that question, so we read the next story and analyze how it might apply to what we are currently working on, and push, and push. Are we good enough?
The reality of it all: Good enough means competing. If we're not or if we are, we must compete for the attention of the literary world. With all the competetion, we get better and stronger and smarter and, best of all, we get closer to becoming great.
At some point we have to make a decision, it's after either the first rejection or hundreth rejection, but we decide that writing is more than getting attention, making people proud, and attaining a certain status. This field of literature gives all its players a sense of purpose and through the game played on that field, we understand ourselves a little bit better.