Real-Time Rejection II: The 1st & 2nd Rejection of “Story X1”

Well, that didn’t take long, and we’ve even got a two-for in rejection land, but it’s not all bad news for “Story X1.” (If you’re just tuning in to the “Story X1” extravaganza, see the first post in this series.)

The first market I chose for “Story X1” is a top-tier, pro horror market, one I would dearly love to crack, and one that is super, lightning fast with responses. I received the following rejection six hours and nine minutes after the submission (which, oddly, is a longer than usual for them).

We have read your submission and unfortunately your story isn’t quite what we’re looking for right now. While we regretfully cannot provide detailed feedback due to the volume of submissions, we thank you for your interest in our magazine and hope you continue to consider us in the future.

This looks like a form letter, and that’s because it is, but it’s also appears to be a higher-tier form letter (a subject I discuss at length in this post). This is my seventh rejection from this particular market, and this is the first time they’ve included that second sentence. Yeah, I know it’s not a personal rejection or glowing praise, but it could be progress with a very tough market, and, better yet, it might tell me a little more about the type of story they’re looking for.

That first rejection came in last night, and I waited to post it until this morning. I sent the story to another top-tier market last night as well, and I’ve already received a rejection. Here it is:

Many thanks for sending “Story X1”, 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.

What’s interesting about this letter is that it looks like a higher-tier form letter because of the “send us something else soon,” which, in my experience, is the type of phrase that differentiates a standard form rejection from a higher-tier form rejection. That said, this is my sixth rejection from this market, and I’ve received the same letter each time. That could mean one of two things. One, I’ve received their higher-tier form rejection each time, or, two, they don’t have a higher-tier form rejection, and this is just the wording they chose for the standard rejection. My rejectomancer senses tell me it’s likely option two, but I could be wrong (I often am).

Of course, the saga continues, and I have chosen another top-tier market for “Story X1” and fired my poor, unwitting creation off into the void once more.

See you soon. 🙂

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