It’s been a while since I did a Random Rejection, so this week I thought I would reach into my giant file folder of writing correspondence and pull something out of it. But instead of either a rejection or an acceptance letter, I drew this instead:
Well it’s been a while since I reached into my vast trove of ancient publisher response letters, so I figured it was about time to do so again. And what did I find this time? An acceptance letter from the old ‘zine “Mindmares”, for my old story “Rush Hour”. (See, it’s not ALL rejection letters in there.) Nothing to do with Jackie Chan or Chris Tucker, this is the story of a man who is stuck in traffic, reading the paper, and failing to notice that there’s a Very Bad Thing heading his way. Whoops.
This week instead of Teaser Tuesday, I decided to reach into the big pile of ancient rejection letters and see what I would find. What I came up with this old slip, from a magazine called Pirate Writings, from none other than Tom Piccirilli, author of such atmospheric horror novels as A Choir of Ill Children and the on-my-Kindle, not-yet-read The Last Kind Words, currently on sale for $0.99 for the Kindle edition. (Marked down from $15. Really, Random House? $15 for an eBook?)
Yes, I’m still here! I’ve been reworking my fantasy novel Shards, AKA “The Big Book”, since mid-December. At this point I should have Part One available within a few months, to be followed (in another ten or twelve months, based on how long it has taken me to rework Part One and on the fact that Part Two is longer).
Why is it taking me so long to finish editing Shards Part One, you ask? Well, I finished Shards quite a while ago (“quite a while” being at least a decade) and when I finally went back to edit it … well, when you go back and read something that you wrote that long ago, what immediately strikes you is that it’s terrible. That’s what happens to me, anyway.
I’ve been hoping to pull this rejection out for a while, as it’s one of my favorites, but I haven’t. So I took matters into my own hands and went looking for it:
It’s been a while since I reached into my stack of rejection letters, so today I dove in and pulled this one out, from Maelstrom, for a short story called “Pinch Bobby ‘Til He Bleeds”.
Today I reached into my massive pile of rejections and pulled out a relatively boring one from Clocktower Fiction’s webzine. This one was for “Love and the Tides of Darkness”, a short story that I originally wrote specifically for an anthology called On The Eighth Day. I really liked this story and tried to sell it to a bunch of different markets, but once the year 2000 rolled around, it was pretty much obsolete.
I haven’t done a Random Rejection in a while, so I reached into my giant accordion file and pulled out a letter. This one is from the Seymour Agency in upstate New York (not far, in fact, from where I went to college). Their opinion is that the manuscript I sent, A Flock of Crows is Called a Murder, needs work; fortunately, they’re here to help.
So this week I reached into my vast collection of rejection letters and pulled out this one, from Schooner Bay Literary Agency:
So it seemed as if things were progressing nicely with Eclipse Comics … I was writing “Night Watchman” stories, my artist was drawing panels, and my editor was getting married and moving away. Good times for all concerned! Sadly, good times never seem to last …