I had my first ‘rejection letter’ a couple of weeks ago (I’ve put that in inverted commas because it wasn’t a letter, it was an email). It was from The Drabble from the 100 word piece I had sent to them. I wasn’t particularly stung by it, if anything it was nice to know that an actual person had read something of mine, even if they didn’t like it. It was fine. Just… fine!
I have been sending short stories and other work out as part of aiming to send out 12 things into the world this year. But it feels more like sending them out into the void. I never expect to get anything back – it’s just a goal to force myself to write.
The ‘rejection letter’ was quite nice too. It just said that it ‘wasn’t the sort of thing they were looking for’. (Inverted commas for quotes this time.) And I immediately thought, ‘Oh, no, I suppose it isn’t’. (Inverted commas for thought. Aren’t inverted commas fun?)
What I sent them was a recording of a moment, an encounter on the street that I thought was funny. I sent it to them because I noticed it was about one hundred words and I then worked on getting the most out of the words available. I’ve been reading the Drabble since, and they generally publish short stories or poems, not slightly comedic observations.
So, I guess, the painfully obvious lesson for me here is to send the right thing to the right recipient and not just send something out because ‘it will do’ (Those inverted commas, again. What crazy guys.) Next year I aim to be a bit more fussy about what I send out. And I’m also determined to write something The Drabble will want!