Here’s the writing process for my short story ‘Healing’

I had my short story “Healing” published in the Short Fiction Break literary magazine!

It’s been a tough process in getting this story up and running. Contest deadlines help (I’m not surprised there!) as well as helpful critiques from fellow authors who had their short stories workshopped and published. It’s been an adventure for me! 

“Healing” is about a young woman named Rosario who visits her parents for their 30th wedding anniversary party. There she witnesses the symptoms of her mother’s condition and must deal with the fallout. 

People who tell you writing a short story is an easy project to tackle don’t know what they’re talking about. The word count is less than that of other written works, but it doesn’t make the creative process any easier. The labor that goes into short story writing isn’t shocking to me — I’ve penned plenty of short stories.  A short story is more difficult to write than a novel because there’s only so much you can convey in fewer words. According to this Reedsy blog post about word counts, a short story should be less than 7,500 words). 

A few years ago, I had written the first draft of what will become “Healing” and wanted to edit it for submission to another literary magazine. Yet, I decided against it because I didn’t like the direction the magazine was going. So the rough draft sat in my files untouched. Then The Write Practice came out with its 10th-anniversary short story contest with the theme “anniversary.” At first, I intended to write a completely new story for it, and I did write the first draft. Yet I couldn’t see anything take shape in that work, so from my files, I fished out the draft I was going to send to the other literary magazine. 

I retained the barebones of the original draft which, told from the perspective of a young woman, was about a relative of hers who makes outrageous claims about what she can do. The climax takes place on Thanksgiving. I changed the occasion to an anniversary (specifically a wedding anniversary) to fit the contest theme. 

Now after getting “Healing” workshopped and published on Short Fiction Break, I qualify for the Readers’ Choice Award! On top of that, I am revealing the cover for “Healing.”

Here it is!

No matter the outcome of this contest, I’m entering a future one from The Write Practice! It has been such a positive experience, and I’m a better author as a result.

On a side note, this is the second The Write Practice short story contest I entered. My first one was in 2016. No, I didn’t win anything.

See what other writers have said about my short story, “Healing”:

“I loved the last paragraph the most. This felt like a really personal story and something very true to your heart.”

“I love the descriptions in this story. … I love how the story was able to transport me.”

Check out my short story “Healing”:

And vote in the Readers’ Choice Award:

To those who already voted for me, thank you for your support!

Teresa Edmond-Sargeant is an award-winning journalist and author. She released her first collection of short stories “Inner Demons” in October 2020. She is the author of the short story ebooks “Eve the First,”“For My Sister,” and “Sammy’s Butterflies.” “A Symphony of Silence” is her second poetry collection. She will release her debut novel “Warding Off Reality” in 2021.

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