With the exception of one hiccup that prevented my boyfriend from finally watching Skyfall before we head out to see Spectre tonight, today has been a pretty good day. It’s the first day off I’ve had where I’ve felt I’ve had some peace and quiet and been productive, without overextending myself and feeling like I’ve somehow wasted a day. Got some cleaning and reorganizing done in the apartment, finally set up my PS3 so that we can play Blu-Ray (which I hadn’t realized wasn’t set up, thus the Skyfall fiasco), got some scribbling done on Fearless for NaNoWriMo, returned to a short story I left hanging, cleared through some emails, read lots of chapters, and I got through a whole lot of my World Unknown Review submissions. Productive as hell, and there’s still more ahead (although it’s just going to go sit in a comfy theater seat and try not to fall asleep as I am wont to do with action movies these days).
The WUR stuff is easily the most exciting. It’s funny; when I first start picking through submissions, I’ll admit, I start to get a little worried. Not as many of the stories really resonate with me, and I begin to wonder if I’ll be mostly choosing out of necessity: stories that are good, but not great. But then I hit a sort of stride in the selection, and there’s a few stories that just shine and sing above the others and immediately make me feel proud that someone sent them to me in the hopes that I might like them enough to publish them. It’s inspiring and it’s humbling, to be sure. And the amazing thing about those stories is that they start to create an energy for the collection as a whole, and some of those stories that didn’t grab me before sudden take on a new light under the glow of the others, and I start to appreciate them in a new way, in the context of the other pieces, understanding how they work well together to make a more powerful and exciting experience for the reader. It even has me challenging myself to step up my own game for my story that I’ll inevitably include because I can and it’s cheap to add myself into the mix.
Long story short, World Unknown Review, Vol. II is going to be damn good, ya’all. And I haven’t even gotten through all the selections yet. I can’t wait to find the best way to cobble them together and bring a great new book to everyone’s bookshelves. And what’s even more? Every year, we’re going to get better, and better, and better.