Rejectathon, Commence. Also, Submission Grinder.

So I polished some things up and sent them out. I look forward to either 1) boilerplate rejections, 2) personalized rejections, or 3) acceptances. #1 would surprise me the least; #2 would probably make me feel the worst; and #3 is unlikely. All the same.

I kind of wish personalized rejections were less professional. They would seem less pitying. Just once, I’d like an email like this:

I pull my hood over my head sometimes and despair.

Dear Ms. McDowell,

We read the thing you sent us, and although we thought some of it was decent, the plotting was stupid. Also, your bio is stupid; no one cares. Also, your name is too long. Also, your sentences are too long. Also, I hated the ending. Otherwise, you know. If not for the stupid plot and the overlong sentences and the shit ending, I’d have gone for it.

Good luck.


It would at least make me laugh, to get that letter, after I got over the initial sting. Maybe I should write a book of fake rejection letters that are way better than the stories they reject.

Anyway… I submitted my old dialogue-only story, “Boogeyman”, as a reprint to PseudopodI figure it might work well for their format, which is the performance of short stories over podcast. I also submitted things to Apex Magazine and The Dark. My submission to DarkFuse is still pending. I’ll keep you all posted.

I may create an arts and crafts project out of my rejections; maybe a collage, maybe a lookbook (not even really sure what that is), maybe a decoupage that I can later use to store acceptances, or gold bullion, or eye cream that I don’t use.

Or I’ll just post them here.

I’ve finally joined Submission Grinder to keep track of things. My husband, Mike (we don’t have the same last name, so don’t try looking him up out of desperate curiosity over my personal life) asked me if that was where gay people send their stories. An only mildly inappropriate joke, but such is his way. He is only mildly inappropriate, and it’s always very measured.

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