"Make a Wish" in The Normal School



A second story has found a home. “Make a Wish” was a featured story fall 2020 issue of The Normal School. I couldn’t be more grateful to a journal that has published a whole passel of exceptional writers over the years.

A second story published… but it was the first story I wrote when I started to take this writing thing seriously in 2018. (And, FWIW, the first story published was far from the second story written).

I was so proud of this story when I finished it. It's the story I didn't know I needed to tell when decided to study writing. It got to an emotional truth I’d found otherwise impossible to capture. That remains. What’s changed is the way I write a sentence, a paragraph, a beat.

“Make a Wish,” the first story I sent out into the world for possible publication, was roundly rejected dozens of times. I understand why. To my ear, much of it now "sounds like writing." That's okay. I hadn't found my voice, and I'm still peering behind every corner for a sign of it, which is only to note that the work is evolving.


As it damned well should.

But make no mistake--I'm crazy proud of this credit. The Normal School is a superb journal (now entirely online), and I find myself in the company of writers I admire a whole helluva lot.

There are also sections in the story I still like very, very much, and I don't even know how I managed to write those words. Should you wish to read it, find it here. And if you don't care for stories of wonderful dogs who are ready to die, please feel free to skip it.

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