APRIL SHOWERS By Shaunna Privratsky

When it rains, it pours. My first taste of success happened a year ago, in April 2001. My essay “The Silk Robe” won in the 2001 National Literature Competition sponsored by American Mothers, Inc. The essay about my Mom placed first in North Dakota and second at the National level. Seven months later, my booklet “The Silk Robe” was published.

Then I suffered a dry spell. After many months of writing, my collection of rejection slips mounted ever higher. I gave myself an ultimatum: if nothing were accepted by the end of the year, I would quit writing.

On December 31, 2001 the editor of E-thought online magazine wrote, “This is a beautiful piece and I would love to publish it.” “The First Snow” is currently online. Talk about last minute miracles! I took up my pen with renewed vigor.

Then the first drops of success pattered onto my keyboard, echoing the distant sound of April rain outside my window. God Allows U-Turns accepted “Healing Memories” for an upcoming anthology. The editor wrote, “I love this story… It is a wonderful story and you are a gifted writer.” Payment is $50 upon publication, slated for September 2002.

A few days later, Simple Joy accepted my first feature article “The Joy of Grocery Shopping” for their November 2002 issue. Payment is $25 upon publication.

Yesterday, my poem “Rain on Vacation” went online at EOTU Magazine. The editor wrote, “I really like the piece. A check for $10 is being sent to you.”

I just found out that Tri County Woman Magazine (which I found on WritersWeekly.com) accepted my article and will be sending me a contract in a few days! They are paying $.10 word and an extra $.05 a word if they use it on their website as well. The article is about 850 words, so I feel like I hit the jackpot.

I realize that this is just the tip of the iceberg of success, yet I hope the showers of acceptance keep on pouring.

Shaunna Privratsky lives in Fargo, ND with her husband, Wade, and two adorable young children, Erica and Alex. In addition to writing, she enjoys reading, decorating, landscaping and collecting teapotsShe is currently seeking publication for her fantasy novel “Nexus” and about twenty short stories, essays and articles.