Advice on REJECTIONS

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Tom

An Old Friend
Rejection is sometimes devestating to people. It changes the coarse of lifetimes. Here's a page on dealing with rejection of your work.


Patricia Duffy Novak



Rejections are a big part of the life of every short fiction writer of my acquaintance. Rejections come in various kinds: the say-nothing form rejection, the targeted form rejection, the personalized say-nothing macro, and the personal note. Like many other writers, I pay too much attention to my rejection letters. I like to get the personal notes and feel temporarily devastated by the say-nothing forms. The personalized say-nothing macros, while no more informative, provide an indication that the editor doesn't think the writer is clueless. At least he (or she) has taken the time to type the writer's name into a computer. Personal rejections mean that the editor likes the writing, but that the story didn't work for that magazine. It may sell elsewhere. Personal rejections are the next best thing to a sale.



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A final reason for rejection is that the magazine is wrong for that story, even if the story is well executed. Each short fiction market has its own flavor. To understand what an editor wants, it is crucial to read the magazines.



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