Pink Think: “Be faithful in small things because it is in them that your strength lies.” – Mother Teresa

photo from coyote-trader

I tried. I really tried.

Every year, I enter a Christmas writing contest in our local paper. I wanted to do so again this year. Hours before the deadline, I was still racking my brain for a warm and fuzzy, Hallmark-type story to submit.

As it has often happened in the past, I did come up with a story…a horror story set around Christmas, called Coyote Christmas.

Honestly, Jewel, I told myself. Can’t you just write a sweet story?

Is it in me to write a sweet story? What does it say about me when I write stories that scare or shock people out of their socks?

I couldn’t submit it. I let the deadline pass. The story is still in my computer.

My husband asked me the other day, “Why don’t you focus on writing short stories? You seem really good at them.”

I’ve been thinking about his comment since, as I try to decide what direction my writing will take from here on.I would love, for instance, to write short stories that collectively read like a novel.

After reading Anchee Min’s novel Pearl of China, I feel inspired to revise my latest historical novel. That’s the way I am leaning right now.

Trying to not rush my decision, as I am in Christmas mode these next couple of weeks. The waiting has been delicious. It’s like waiting to open a present.

Last week, I finally got an answer from the assistant to the big-name agent who’s had my Ghost Moon Night manuscript since September. And the answer was no.


The note was encouraging and generous with the feedback. He said he was “totally creeped out” by my “vividly imagined” monsters.

I keep thinking my penchant for writing scary stories is less than honorable. But maybe, just maybe, I should be capitalizing on this.