Today I’m guest-blogging over at The Woman Formerly Known as Beautiful thanks to the generosity of Shannon Bradley-Colleary. I’d love it if you’d spend a few minutes getting to know what it feels like growing up slutty—it’s lots of fun, promise!
I’m doing something a little different with this post. The following creative nonfiction essay was the first piece of work I submitted. I wrote the first draft in college at the University of Iowa, where I majored in English and studied under Jo Ann Beard. Jo Ann is one of my favorite nonfiction writers and the author of a fabulous novel. I highly recommend her acclaimed essay “The Fourth State of Matter” and her novel In Zanesville.
In early 2011, I saw a brief review of Jo Ann’s novel in Time Magazine. I dug up the hard-copy of my essay, and the beautiful and flattering critique she had attached to the version I submitted to her all those years ago.
My passion for writing was reignited that day.
I spent weeks editing the essay and waited nearly two years before I let it go out into the world.
The luck of the submission gods was on my side—I submitted this piece to four literary magazines, and after only two rejections it was accepted by Lunch Ticket, the literary journal from the MFA community at Antioch University Los Angeles. It was published late last year in their Winter/Spring 2014 issue. Thank you Lunch Ticket!
I had been off social media for a while when it was published and this blog didn’t yet exist.