September was a solid month, and my progress with short story submissions was much less sloth-like than previous months. It’s a mixed bag this time, with rejections, acceptances, and some noteworthy publications.
September Report Card
*Three (3) of these rejections were for submissions sent in September.
Here we go. This is what Rejectomancy is all about! Five rejections this month; let’s have a look.
Rejection 1: 9/3/16
Thank you for your submission to XXX.
We regret that we are unable to publish “XXX” We are grateful for the opportunity to consider it, and we wish you the best of luck in placing it elsewhere.
A common form rejection from one of the bigger horror markets. Nothing much to see here, really, and I’ve received this exact rejection numerous times. This will be a running theme for September, by the way.
Rejection 2: 9/3/16
Thank you for your interest in XXX, unfortunately, your story does not fit our needs at this time.
As this is a brand new publication with no real backdrop of study, you should not take this rejection personally. Please submit again in the future, however, no sooner than 20 days from the date of this notice.
The 3rd was a multiple-rejection day, and this one is from a brand new market. It’s a pretty standard form rejection, but I like the note they tacked on at the end. I don’t put a lot of stock in this canned niceties you often see in rejection letters, but this is always good advice. Rejections are NOT personal.
There’s one other thing about this rejection that’s a bit different. They ask you not to resubmit for a period of 20 days. It’s not uncommon for publishers to do this, though I usually see it in their submission guidelines. I think it’s a good idea for a publisher to remind writers of this particular rule in a rejection, since it’s likely you haven’t looked at the publisher’s guidelines in quite some time, and the rejection will be fresh in your mind.
Rejection 3: 9/12/16
Thank you for the opportunity to read “XXX.” Unfortunately, your story isn’t quite what we’re looking for right now.
In the past, we’ve provided detailed feedback on our rejections, but I’m afraid that due to time considerations, we’re no longer able to offer that service. I appreciate your interest in XXX and hope that you’ll keep us in mind in the future.
Remember that theme I talked about in rejection number one? So, I finished a new story this month, and, as I usually do, I’m sending it to all the top-tier markets that accept horror. These are all exceedingly tough markets to crack, and I’ve received lots of form rejections, like this one, from all of them. Anyway, this is another standard form rejection. Moving on.
Rejection 4: 9/14/16
Many thanks for sending “XXX”, but I’m sorry to say that it isn’t right for XXX. I wish you luck placing it elsewhere, and hope that you’ll send me something new soon.
Another standard form rejection from a top-tier horror market for the same story as the previous rejection. What’s great about these markets is they’re really fast, usually taking no more than a couple of days to send a rejection. So, I can usually hit three or four of them in the same week.
Rejection 5: 9/15/16
We have read your submission and will have to pass, as it unfortunately does not meet our needs at this time.
Remember when I said these top-tier markets are quick? This one is by far the quickest, and this rejection came within an hour and a half. That’s not even my record for this publisher. I once received a rejection in 46 minutes. I honestly don’t know how they do it, but I appreciate the lightning-fast response. Another standard form rejection, likely recognizable to anyone who regularly submits to the pro horror markets.
One acceptance this month, though it comes with a catch (see below).
Acceptance 1: 9/10/16
Normally, on the blog, I’ll share just about everything with you when it comes to ejections and acceptances, but this is one of those times where I can’t. The acceptance letter for this month contains some information I’m not at liberty to divulge, and there’s really no easy way to excise that info from the letter. I’ll just say that it’s an acceptance from a market that’s published me once before, and it’s a story I’m really excited about. I’ll post more info when I can.
My two publications this month are a little out of the ordinary in that they’re both audio publications.
Publication 1: 9/23/16
Man, I was excited for this one. I sold my vampire/baseball story “Night Games” to Pseudopod way back in December of 2015. As you can imagine, a market like Pseudopod needs a bit more time to prepare a story for publication, what with securing voice work, recording, editing, and so forth. In addition, the editors thought it would be fitting to publish the story at the end of the 2016 baseball season, and I wholeheartedly agree.
The narrator, Rish Outfield, did a fantastic job, and I couldn’t be more pleased with the way the story turned out. Normally, I wouldn’t harangue you to go out and read/listen to one of my stories, but in this case, I’m gonna. Why? Well, “Night Games” is my favorite of the stories I’ve written thus far, and I think it’s very indicative of my writing style (that’ll be good or bad depending on your point of view and tastes). And, seriously, the narration is just awesome. It’s worth the price of admission all by itself (the story is free to listen to, by the way).
Publication 2: 9/27/16
So the second publication is the audio version of my Iron Kingdoms novel Acts of War: Flashpoint. Again, the narration, this time by Noah Levine, is top-notch, and it was really cool to hear all the characters in the book come to life. I was really happy with the way this turned out, and I’m grateful to Noah and Audible for doing such a bang-up job.
Anyway, if you’d like to listen to Flashpoint, click the pretty picture below.
And that was my September. How was yours?