A Favored Rejection
March 10, 2011 § 2 Comments
I recently submitted a piece of work to a certain publication that I was and am quite excited about. I was, as you can tell from the heading above, rejected. Now this normally wouldn’t be anything I’d mention here.
Except a certain friend of mine, said some interesting things that got me thinking. I won’t post every rejection, but the idea of public failure being important. That’s something I can actually get behind, especially when it is something I am a) excited about the publication b) impressed by it.
Yesterday I read my rejection and on top of the considerate words and feedback contained in the message itself, the editor provided a link to his publicly posted story notes on all entries.
Anyways. I found it important to post this mostly because the rejection itself was encouraging and I was impressed by the amount of feedback I received. I’m going to be submitting a different story to the anthology, but regardless of the results I look forward to reading the Last Contact Anthology from Triangulation.
My story is #140 in the list, and I’ve copied the notes below.
Reader 1: “This story is too disjointed for me. This may be some sort of experimental writing style. I can’t tell. I don’t really understand the ending either.”
The story opens on the strength of its sharp observations. Camera POV yields a sense of true mystery (since we’re not in character POV and cannot understand motivation). The drawback is that this POV will keep us from identifying with the character to any great degree. So far so good, however. Okay, this is not strict camera POV, but a loose omniscient that gives access to his senses, but not his thoughts. That’s okay as long as it is consistent and serves the story purpose. Some great prose. This is the way I prefer it, simple, effective prose with solid observations, peppered with occasionally brilliant moments (a sense or image delivered in an unexpected way, a flash of metaphor). In this way the moments shine rather than being lost amid so much glitter.
Nicely surreal moment on p2.
Overall, I like this. Unfortunately, it’s really not accessible enough for the anthology. This is a sharply described, magical moment and (I suspect) a metaphor, but it is not enough of a story for us.
Slush-o-meter (1-10): 8 A beautifully observed moment of surrealism. The story arc is minimal, though there is a sense of cost to the resolution.