A post or two ago, we discussed writing for anthologies, a current hot market. From now 'til year-end (can't believe we're nearly at the close of 2011), we'll talk a bit more with editor, writer and instructor Anne Witkavitch, who compiled and edited the new anthology Press Pause Moments: Essays About Life Transitions by Women Writers. The anthology began with the Press Pause Project.
AA: What prompted you to start the Press Pause anthology project?
AW: I was frustrated. I’d completed my MFA in professional writing and left the corporate world to go out on my own so I could pursue my writing. Though some good things were happening—I had landed a gig as a contributing writer and blogger for TravelingMom.com and had a couple of articles accepted for a yet-to-be published anthology— I had not yet achieved the big goal, which was publishing my first book. While I kept receiving encouragement from well-respected publishing pros, I got discouraged reading news stories about celebrities and reality stars who were getting their books published while mine sat in my documents folder, collecting rejections. A writer friend had worked on an anthology, and I called him with the classic, “I’ve got a crazy idea and want to see what you think.” He loved the idea of me creating a women’s anthology focused on life transitions, a topic I’d already been speaking about through my Press Pause Now retreats . He walked me through the process, and then I wrote and distributed the submission guidelines, got my first submission and panicked—women writers actually wanted to be a part of this project! The book became real to me. I was ecstatic and scared at the same time.