We traveled home from Texas on Saturday and Sunday. The Great Unpacking is done and the laundry going full force this morning. It's always nice to have a winter break, but coming home is even nicer. As the miles rolled by, I sat in the car thinking about all the projects I wanted to work on in my writing life. Plotting and planning all the way home!
Another thing I did while we were away those ten days was to read all the stories in the anthologies I'd received as author copies. When they show up in my mailbox, I read my own story to see if it was published as sent, and to bask a tiny bit in the joy of seeing it in print. Then, I put the book aside with well-meaning intentions of reading it from cover to cover. Three had come just prior to the holiday season, and my intentions ran astray.
I finished the Guideposts anthology and must admit that I shed many a tear when reading some of the stories about extraordinary answers to prayer.I found myself feeling very blessed in so many ways after reading all that some people have been through.
Next, I dived into the Thin Threads book--In Times of Change. This was the first time I'd had my work in a Thin Threads anthology. I have to say that I've been very impressed with the quality of the work. I read the bios of the contributing authors and the caliber of the authors also impressed me. Many were professional journalists, writing instructors and full-time freelance writers. There were also writers who are not widely published as yet, so anyone that contributes a story has a chance here.
It's good to read the other stories in an anthology to compare your own work to the rest. I also find myself doing a little mental critiquing as I read. Being in my writers group for son long has left me mentally critiquing almost everything I read. Not a bad thing as it makes me more aware of a lot of little technical things in my own writing.
I think some writers who have stories in anthologies never get around to reading the entire book. It's too bad, for there is much to be learned and a lot to enjoy. The best part is that you don't need to read it all at once. It's the kind of book that can be put down and picked up a week later with nothing lost. I still have one to go and will make it bedtime reading.