I was writing a bit of whimsy, gawd ‘elp us! when my email flashed an incoming note from a publisher. I was a bit surprised because I wasn’t expecting anything at the moment. There is a piece with an American publisher which allegedly is still being considered for publication but which I expect is propping up a wobbly desk somewhere and I would be (pleasantly) amazed if I heard any more from them. There is another story out there, but I know that publisher and they aren’t going to reply just yet. Then there was a story I’d submitted to a prestigious SF magazine for consideration, but that was yesterday and I couldn’t imagine anyone being that quick.
I guess some things suck so bad that all you need is a glance.
First up, I’m impressed they even got around to looking at it within 24 hours. That is frankly amazing.
Second I’m distinctly teed off that they can take one look and bin it. I know, I know, and they were quite clear that ‘it wasn’t what they were looking for at the moment’, but let’s face it that sits right up there with ‘ it’s not you it’s me’ in the greater scheme of crappy let downs. I think what we can read from that sequence of events is – reader opened the email and went; ‘Nah fam, s’rubbish innit?’ or the US equivalent.
I’m guessing that given the number I was in the submissions queue and the fact it was c12,000 words long, they didn’t actually read the whole thing before pressing the preformatted get stuffed email button. Don’t get me wrong, I’m very grateful it wasn’t really ‘get stuffed’, my ego is fragile enough, and it is nice not to be left hanging about for months wondering what is going on, but…
It would have been nice if they could have perhaps waited another 24 hours just to preserve the mystique, the glimmer of a possibility that they may have actually read more than the title or first paragraph before going, ‘Jeez, no way!’– bin. I mean I could treasure that 24 hours of hope without fretting and at least buy into the ‘not quite what we are looking for at the moment.’ But less than 24 hours! I mean how long have they actually been working in the States? A morning? That means they probably didn’t even get past the covering letter.
Maybe leave the whimsy about blood doning for the time being, and go and sulk for a bit.