Monday, December 26, 2016

Refusing to Give Up This Time?


I recently posted an entry about feeling demoralized over an Op-Ed piece I was preparing to submit to a leading newspaper. I wrote that I used an online website to analyze the piece for readability, and it indicated that my Op-Ed used too many big words and long, complex sentences to be read easily by anyone with less than a college graduate or post-graduate education. I also wrote that other pieces of mine that I had analyzed on that website scored largely the same, and that I didn't know what to do about this, because I felt uneasy about trying to write any simpler than I thought I did already. But I said I would do my best to "overhaul my writing style" without losing my voice in the process.

Well, as I indicated later, I polished the Op-Ed piece and submitted it, and I've been waiting several days to see if the newspaper accepted it. But they haven't, so I don't think they will. And this leaves me wondering what I should do. Should I just give up? I tried, they didn't take it, and so now it's time to admit defeat and move on to something else? Or is the message of my piece important enough that I should rewrite and resubmit it? That way, even if they don't publish it, I'll have made a nobler effort than I have in a long time to accomplish something important to me. What's more, I will have worked on improving the readability, and, thus, marketability of my writing.

I think I should go for it. It won't be easy, and I've spent much of my life avoiding what's difficult. But not this time?

2 comments:

Thomas Armstrong said...

Steve, I think what you write is VERY "readable" and understandable. If you piece has some unusual words in it, perhaps you should consider dumbing them down. Otherwise, I think, perhaps, the publication that you submitted your piece to ISN'T GOOD ENOUGH for your excellent work.

Consider writing exclusively for the New York Times.

Steve said...

The publication I submitted my piece to WAS the New York Times. But I'm going to try again with shorter, simpler sentences and dumbed down words.