Rejection, rejection, rejection...

Discussion in 'Traditional Publishing' started by deadrats, Aug 19, 2016.

  1. deadrats

    deadrats Contributor Contributor

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    A 142-day form rejection from Michigan Quarterly Review.
     
  2. lavalamp

    lavalamp New Member

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    Hello there,

    I've been reading your threads with interest and just wondered if you might have any thoughts - I submitted some poetry to Granta in May 2021 and have basically heard nothing back, it's erm, if my calculation is correct, 454 days and counting! not that I was counting initially. I had been writing poetry (amongst other things) for a good twenty years and had acquired almost every issue since Granta mag's very beginning, I'd always dreamed of getting something in there one day. I'd put off and off and off actually submitting, (long story) and finally took the plunge last May.
    I resolved to submit and then just forget it - if I heard I heard kinda thing. I expected a long wait. What I didn't really expect was to be sat here 15 months later none the wiser. And scouring the internet provides little insight in to the inner workings of the magazine.
    Is this normal for Granta? The thing has been stuck at 'in-progress' for a long time.
    I'm aware that enquiring is a no-no unless you want to get crushed immediately like an ant, but to make people wait such an extraordinarily long time just seems untenable to me, or should I say, rather cruel!
    From what I see, the whole arena seems pretty brutal!
     
  3. deadrats

    deadrats Contributor Contributor

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    Hi @lavalamp -- Sometimes these places can seem like they're taking forever. My longest wait with Granta was 604 days. As much as we all hate waiting, in my experience an acceptance always takes longer than a rejection since is will usually go to another reader or editor and then on the agenda for a staff meeting. Of course, some places operate differently, but I believe that's the process with Grants, You can log onto the submission manager and check the status. Or you could send an email to check on it. My advice is to keep waiting it out. Making more submissions always helps me from getting to obsessed with one or a few. Good luck, my friend. And welcome to our rejection world.
     
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  4. Native Ink

    Native Ink Active Member

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    You might want to send them a status query. Check their website and see if they have a policy on when to send a query. Many journals do. Granta is probably just being slow, but sometimes there is a problem with your submission that needs to be fixed.
     
  5. lavalamp

    lavalamp New Member

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    Thanks deadrats and Native Ink, good to hear from you, wow 604 days? Was your item successful after that stupendous wait? I sure hope so. Yikes.
    I'm no stranger to rejection etc., in the past on a totally different platform. But I never experienced such lengthy delays before. I mean when nearly two years go by, heck, anything could've happened!???
    Thanks for your wise words deadrats, I guess I got a more than a bit obsessed with Granta, probably as I thought my stuff was a good fit, y'know?

    I couldn't find anything on the site about making a query, and it certainly scares me!
    Back to the drawing board I think while I continue waiting. I've got loads of items waiting in the wings so I'm wondering about other avenues now.
    It seems like during the pandemic especially, the world and his wife, dog, parrot, and hamster became hopeful writers/poets/artists??!
    Everything seems super-saturated these days.
     
  6. X Equestris

    X Equestris Contributor Contributor

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    A 26-day higher-tier form rejection from OFIC Magazine.
     
  7. AntPoems

    AntPoems Contributor Contributor

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    :)
     
  8. deadrats

    deadrats Contributor Contributor

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    A 151-day form rejection from Indiana Review.
     
  9. Native Ink

    Native Ink Active Member

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    146-day form rejection from New England Review.
     
  10. Native Ink

    Native Ink Active Member

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    I'm curious how other writers judge when it is time to open up a finished/submitted story for another round of revision. In the past, I've been too quick to think my story needs another draft after it's been rejected. I'm trying to hold off now until it is has rejected 20 times. (I think I once heard a successful writer say this was her strategy). It seems to be a balance between recognizing your story isn't quite there yet and being patient enough to realize your story is already good enough but hasn't found its market yet. How do you decide it's time to reopen a story you've already submitted and give it a thorough revision?
     
  11. deadrats

    deadrats Contributor Contributor

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    I think this is one of those things that varies story to story. At least for me it does. I have one story that I sent out more than 50 times before it sold and I did very little after first sending it out. I have another story that after like two or three submissions I did a major rewrite and then it sold the very next time I submitted it. That was my biggest sale and it never would have happened without the revisions. It is a balance, but at the same time I think we know when something is our best vs something we hope is good or good enough. I'm in the process of rewriting, revamping, and resining some of my work to get it ready for the fall submitting season. In my experience and opinion, it never hurts to give something an extra pass or two.
     
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  12. deadrats

    deadrats Contributor Contributor

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    A 23-day form rejection from West Branch.
     
  13. B.E. Nugent

    B.E. Nugent Contributor Contributor

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    That 211 day submission reached 217 before ending in form rejection from Southword. Form rejections more promptly from Split Lip, Flash Fiction Online, Craft.
     
  14. Woodstock Writer

    Woodstock Writer Senior Member

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    :)

    An acceptance to an anthology of contemporary women’s stories. A bit different from my usual (I usually write YA) and the longest story I’ve ever written (over 11,000 words).
     
  15. deadrats

    deadrats Contributor Contributor

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    Question for my fellow submitters -- I never usually spell things out in my cover letters. In fact, I never say anything about a story other than the title and word count in a cover letter. However, what are your thoughts to cluing an editor in a certain word in another language if that word is also used for something like a character's name (telling them what the word means)? I don't care to explain such in the story and the story works just fine for an English speaking audience. So, I could just leave it be and not even mention it in the cover letter. However, I think it adds a level of cleverness for anyone who does know this language. This word is also the title of the story. Again, I believe it works just fine as is. I'm just wondering if telling the editor what the word means is a good idea or not. I would love your thoughts on this. Thanks.
     
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2022
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  16. Native Ink

    Native Ink Active Member

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    75-day (possibly higher-tier?) form rejection from Granta.
     
  17. Native Ink

    Native Ink Active Member

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    If the audience of the piece is likely to be English speakers, I wouldn't say anything in your cover letter.

    EDIT: Like you, I try to avoid adding much beyond the basic facts to my cover letter. Today I did add a comment to a submission. I thought my story was close to being appropriate for a theme issue the journal had planned but not quite close enough to earmark it for that issue. I mentioned this in my cover letter as a not-so-subtle hint that the editor might still consider my general submission for the theme issue. Did it help my chances? Probably not, but I wanted the editor to know I was thinking about the call for work.
     
    Last edited: Sep 3, 2022
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  18. AntPoems

    AntPoems Contributor Contributor

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    If it isn't essential to understanding the story, I probably wouldn't mention it. I think something like that is more of an "Easter egg," meant for discovery rather than explanation, and pointing it out runs the risk of seeming condescending. You have plenty of experience with cover letters and dealing with editors, so I'd say trust your gut.
     
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  19. Woodstock Writer

    Woodstock Writer Senior Member

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    A 25-day personal rejection from Prismatica, with the below comment:

    ‘The concept is interesting, but the piece is pretty exposition-heavy and the pacing could be tightened/more dynamic. I'd encourage the writer to write a new draft and then resubmit!’

    I guess that’s encouraging, the trouble is I have no idea how to rewrite it to make it more to their liking…
     
  20. B.E. Nugent

    B.E. Nugent Contributor Contributor

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    :)
     
  21. J.T. Woody

    J.T. Woody The Ole Frazzle-Dazzle Contributor

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    i got a nice personalized rejection from an agent.
    she first apologized for the delay because she said more than half of her queries got lost in Spam, and mine was one of the casualties. she reviewed my materials and liked the story, the characters, and the writing was "well done!" but it didn't check enough of her boxes to pursue :(
     
  22. deadrats

    deadrats Contributor Contributor

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    A 283-day form rejection from The Southern Review.
     
  23. X Equestris

    X Equestris Contributor Contributor

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    A 16-day high-tier form rejection from miniskirt magazine
     
  24. X Equestris

    X Equestris Contributor Contributor

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    A 13-day form rejection from Troopers. I’ll probably go back and rewrite this one, since I had to make some deep cuts to keep it under the 1k word limit.
     
  25. AntPoems

    AntPoems Contributor Contributor

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    :)
     

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