My First Time is a regular feature in which writers talk about virgin experiences in their writing and publishing careers, ranging from their first rejection to the moment of holding their first published book in their hands. Today’s guest is Ron Currie Jr., author of the novels God Is Dead, Everything Matters!, and the recently-released Flimsy Little Plastic Miracles. His writing has appeared in Glimmer Train, The Sun, Other Voices, The Nervous Breakdown and several other places. The Believer has called his fiction "bladder-threateningly hilarious." Currie has received the New York Public Library Young Lions award, the Addison M. Metcalf award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, and the Alex Award from the American Library Association. Click here to visit his website. You can also find him on Facebook and Twitter.
My First Resolve
I gave myself a deadline six months away, on my 26th birthday. If no one had accepted a story of mine by then, I was all done.
It seems laughably dramatic, from this side of the divide--the notion that if I hadn't published anything by the ripe old age of 26, I was useless as a writer. Ah, the narrow perspective of youth. But it also focused me, because I knew deep down that I really, really didn't want to give it up. And the focus paid off--just a couple of weeks before my birthday, I got my first acceptance, from a new online magazine. The magazine was named for a writer whose books had recently become holy texts for me. It paid nothing, and was read by nearly no one. I was overjoyed. I was galvanized. Twelve years and three novels later, I still remember the moment, and its effect, as though George W. were still just stumbling through his first inauguration speech.
Photo by Lisa Prosienski