The Overthinker’s Guide to Literary Acceptances

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Happy Diwali everyone! May the festival of lights bring you happiness, peace and prosperity.

I am off celebrating today, not just Diwali but two acceptances that brightened up this month for me! Both pieces are going through edits, but I’ll definitely share when its ready for publication!

It is a sheer joy to read any positive email that says someone wants to publish your work, but even so, a series of thoughts and emotions when I see one!


Surely, it’s been sent by mistake!

What if they change their mind and want to take it back?

I bet they can’t as they won’t want to appear rude!

Who cares either way! I’ve got an acceptance in a fantastic lit mag!!

A steady incessant supply of rejections over the years (of course, intermingled with acceptances) has honed me to expect the worst! Even when the subject line clearly states ‘Acceptance’ I wonder for a moment if I’ve read it correctly. In fact, for one of the emails I misread the subject and had all but hit the button to dispatch it to the Junk folder!!

Once I read the words, I think they must have made a mistake! Clearly, they meant to send it to some brilliant writer who has a way with words! Why would they send it to me?? And then of course it follows – that if they’ve sent it to me by mistake, then they will want to retract their words! How embarrassing that would be for me as well as them!

But then I think – if they suffer from politeness as I do, they might find it difficult to string together the words that will dump the bad news, so they may just suck it up and let me have my acceptance, LOL!

It takes me multiple reads of the messages and words for the great news to really sink in! And once it does, I’m on the phone calling and texting everyone I know to share my thrill and happiness!

It’s a great feeling, especially when it comes rarely, as it has for me this year because I’ve been writing and submitting much less.

So that’s the emotional rollercoaster I’ve been riding the last couple of weeks! I will be giving thanks in the Diwali pooja, and of course, bursting firecrackers of joy later in the evening.

Have you ever felt like an impostor when you get an acceptance? Do share with me your emotional process so I know I’m not alone!

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