The Pyrenees---Southern France

The Pyrenees---Southern France

Monday, September 25, 2017

Spending the Night With Linda O'Connell

         Linda O'Connell recently spoke as part of a panel for the St. Louis Publishers Association's September meeting. 

        There were three editors/publishers who also spoke. Linda is a prolific writer and has edited anthologies. She's a generous critique partner. Here is what she shared with the audience:
  • She admitted, right off the bat, she did not have the same kind of MFA as some of the other panelists. Her MFA stands for "Mighty Fine Attitude."  (I suspect the "A" stands for a different word, a thee-letter word, since I've heard her husband talk about what attracted him to Linda, but I can't be sure...) 
  • It's important to write to express, not to impress. Instead of saying "feminine hygiene products," why not just say "tampons"?
  • Rejection's more about them (the editor) than you (the writer). It's either a case of "They don't appreciate your work" or "Your work doesn't meet their needs." 
  • Linda doesn't keep an Excel spreadsheet of her submissions. Instead, she handwrites what she submits on a calendar. If it's been a week a few days (or in the case of uber-prolific Linda) an hour since she last sent off something, she'll get busy and polish up a piece to submit it. 

                  If you were part of a panel, what advice would you share?