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A better class of rejection?

I was advised that it would be better if I didn’t talk about rejections and submissions on my blog in case it gives a “bad impression” of my writing abilities. The person who advised this meant well, and said it kindly, but I just don’t think it’s my style to pretend that I only ever send out successful submissions. I don’t sub a lot, I rarely enter competitions, and I am trying to focus wholeheartedly on completing my novel, however, I have several small fictions that I would like to see published, and I mentioned here that I had sent a few to various places. So far I have had three rejections for three different pieces. As far as rejections go, these are lovely and encouraging. Three different editors have bothered to send me these comments:

Editor one – “We’re passing but this is a fine piece. Would be happy to read more of yours”

Editor two – “How’s it going? I just read the flash fiction piece you submitted. I regret to say that “xxxx” didn’t make the final cut for ZZZZ. Nevertheless, i really dig your style and think your style would make a great fit for ZZZZ. So feel free to submit a fresh batch of work for future consideration.”

Editor three – ” Thanks for sending us “xxxx”. We’re sorry to say they didn’t quite find a home in ZZZZ. We had a bumper crop of submissions and had to make a lot of hard decisions fast, and live with them, unfortunately. It was a close run thing. We always like pieces that are a little off the main road like this, so we do hope you’ll send us something for the next issue. We think you were unlucky this time around.”

Nice huh? All three say they would like to see more. That’s great. But (y’all knew there’d be a but, right?) really, hmm, if it’s so fine, and you dig my style and so on…erm…what else do you want? Gimme a clue maybe and I’ll see if I have something that works.

Ho hum, onwards….

Oh, and yes, dear writing chums, I hear you, I will send them elsewhere, I will keep faith, I’m not unhappy, I’m merely pondering.

: )

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9 responses »

  1. Funny, isn’t it, when someone suggests you don’t mention the negative side of things on your blog. I had that a year or so ago when I had a terrible experience of a flash story of mine being “edited” without my permission and printed in a print mag without my approval. I kept it all anonymous, but still several people (some of them writers) told me to take it down immediately. But then what use would we be to the community of writers if we pretended everything was rosy? And what fab rejections, they are the best kind. Rejection is an essential part of the process, to pretend it never happens – or to not mention that there are better ways to reject a piece of work – would be to live in a world more fictional than the ones we write about!

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  2. Well done for staying honest; this is a writer’s blog and rejection is part of being a writer.And how nice it is to have decent rejections like that.Nik

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  3. Ponder away, my dear, we’re listening.Funny thing about being a writer – others don’t like when we complain about the bits we don’t enjoy. We are supposed to be eternally grateful and positive for every scrap of encouragement/recognition/publication. Well, sorry, we are writers, hear us moan!

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  4. Rejections are part of life aren’t they, not always negative, it doesn’t mean the writing is bad, just that perhaps it doesn’t fit in that particular place, or with that particular editor. I like realist blogs, not rose tinted ones…

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  5. Tania ~ I *get* that we are supposed to be promoting ourselves as these in demand writers in the hope that people will happen upon our pages and buy into our self proclaimed hype so we shouldn’t speak out, but ugh, how ghastly would that be? Nik ~ cheers. It is part of it isn’t it, and yeah, as far as rejections go they are pretty ok.WRW ~ You are so right! Yeah, hear us indeed!Annie ~ thanks, I too like to read the truth from my writing colleagues, it’s not all one delightful publication followed by another, it’s work, and finding the right place, and a sprinkle of luck too sometimes (right place right time kinda thing.)

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  6. Well, I FAR prefer to read realistic blog posts. What happens if some egocentric writer only ever pours sugar onto the screen? I dont believe it, and I dont go back. It’s not interesting, helful or useful. Its when someone like you posts this type of thing that it gets a discssion going. And people like all the above can come in and add thier own take. And that is FAR more useful to other writers… I know that lots of this is chance… your pieces may have dealt with a subject that had already been selected in another piece of writing, for this issue.You’ve had super feedback, and the pieces will all find a home elsewhere. If you like, you’ve had unpaid appraisals back on your work… look at it that way!Far better than the one liner I had from quite an ‘in’ editor of a US mag, saying ‘No. I don’t like this piece although it is extremely well written.’Wot?

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  7. Who the fuck gave you that advice? Blog about that u want.S

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  8. There is blog by a poet that I read sometimes called ‘We liked it but not quite enough’.One of the best blog titles ever I think!Oh and hello.

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  9. Vanessa – yup, I agree, I’d hate to write a blog that was just a big ego puff “oh wow, I’m so great, this is here, that is there, everything is fab in my world…” Blah to the max.BlogSloth – I really do think they meant well. They maintain a blog that is just a list of their “hits”, they were concerned I may look a bit rubbish. Whateva!Rachel – hello back! That is an excellent blog title, and says so much . : )

    Reply

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