I am always a finalist in the Southwest Writers Contest. I am always a finalist in the New Mexico Book Awards. Until this year. That might be a good thing.
This year was the first year that I wasn't a finalist in much of anything. No awards, nothing on my resume. Seriously, I was going to hold off on sending out a resume until I knew for sure that I was a finalist. Why didn't I win in either contest? I can say that my writing doesn't easily fit into the categories, but I will just come out and say it. The competition was stiff this year, and perhaps the other competitors were just better. I can live with that.
There is an awards banquet on November 15 for the New Mexico book awards. I was contemplating hiring a publicist and going on a massive publicity tour. I was going to put my life on hold until then. Now, I'm already planning my entries for next year and figuring out what I'm going to begin writing in December.
When I was writing Rattlesnake Lawyer, all my eggs were literally in one manuscript. When I got a rejection, I would be on the edge of tears because that meant it would be all over. As of this moment, Laws & Loves is coming out as an ebook in a few weeks, my Southwest Writer's anthology project is also coming out, perhaps at the same time. One or both of those projects could take my to the next level. I have complete manuscripts already done-- my modern western set in Navajo Country and my science fiction book, A Million Dead Lawyers. The question isn't if they get published, but WHEN.
And then there's this silly blog. I had hoped that I would have won the Southwest Writers contest with this blog by now. Well, that's not going to happen, but I will have more material and I will try again next year.
Does it hurt to lose? Hell yes, it does. I moped around all afternoon, but I'm up at dawn ready to go. See you next year!