While enjoying the readings of this and other lit journals, I’m as well looking at the potentiality of submission and naturally where my writing style and story might possibly fit. Well, I’m learning a lot.
One thing that surprises me after being trained to cut out every word that doesn’t progress or emphasize the story needfully, is the almost "blah, blah, blah" feeling I’m getting in reading many of the published works. And good God no–I’m not say that the stories are boring! At least not the majority of them. But there is an awful lot of extraneous background and dialogue that have me flipping to note the last page of a story and how much longer it goes on. Many of these are just nice little stories; warm and fuzzy, get to know the characters a bit and smile or whatever with them, and then they end. Finally. And I move on to the next one.
So what am I missing in my own writing and narrative abilities that are present in these stories? It’s beginning to look like it would be the laying down of a base that holds the reader like flypaper for a while. I can see that my character development could use some fleshing out, but dragging out a tale is different than creating depth. Setting doesn’t seem overdone in these stories, although backstory setting can be ("my grandmother’s green overstuffed couch," etc.).
I think from overgrown to severely pruned I’ve destroyed a full year’s blossoms. Somehow it doesn’t seem right to fill in the sparseness with plastic flowers…