Dang, it was just a dream.
In it, Ron Carlson (UC Irvine) wrote me a personal rejection letter (for a lit journal submission; not for grad school) that included the praise, “I have no doubt you’ll be a great writer one day.”
I went back to my writing teacher, who in the dream was Lisa Regul (my supervisor at Ten Peed Press), who agreed to help me get the story tightened up for resubmission. “If you get it ready by Friday you can have Michelle hand deliver it,” Lisa said, whoever Michelle was.
Lisa showed me her own notes on the story, and I compared them to the notes Carlson sent, which were all very encouraging. “Cowboy’s voice becomes Zak’s voice in the last third,” and “Cowboy vixen? Move dramatic hook up to front,” were the main takeaways.
When I sat down to revise though, I ran into a snag. I didn’t remember sending Ron Carlson this story.
Moreover, Ron Carlson didn’t even edit Irvine’s lit journal. Was this meant to be a pre-rejection for the MFA program?
Then: I didn’t even write a story about a cowboy. It sure read like something I wrote. But I would know whether I’d written and submitted something, wouldn’t I?
Might be the start of a mystery story, nu?