I just got an e-mail from Richard Meyer, String Editor at Alfred Publishing - they've selected three of my pieces for their 2010-2011 catalog! I'm super-excited! This is the best birthday gift for the 12th year running!
I submitted nine pieces back in May (including two re-submissions) and am proud of all of them, but expected a few to stand out. As usual, I'm surprised (though not at all disappointed) by their choices. I thought that my piece for combined orchestras would be a big hit, that my Bachata would be an exotic choice, and that the piece that lets students improvise would stand out, but none of them were selected. I stand by those pieces and I'll give them another shot by re-submitting them in the future.
So what did they take? First, they were charmed by "Sneaking Suspicion," an all-pizzicato piece for beginners. It's cartoon tiptoe music. Next is "Storm Trail," a firey minor-key piece for intermediate players. It's this year's "Gauntlet." Finally, they selected "Star Of Valor," a triumphant major-key overture for intermediate-to-advanced players. This one was written for Chris Doemel and the Mabry Middle School orchestra of Marietta, Georgia - the same folks who commissioned "Westward Motion." I originally submitted this a few years ago in two forms - I gave Alfred the option of publishing an all-string version or the full-orchestra version that premiered in Georgia. This year, they opted for the strings-only version.
I'm extra super happy and, to be honest, very relieved. May through July is a tense time for me as I wait to hear what the selection committe has decided. I think they picked some really good ones that have the potential to be really popular.