A little over a month ago, I published a post called How Long Does It Take to Sell a Story? In that post I charted out how long it took me in days to sell some of my published flash fiction and short stories. The results were interesting, and I want to revisit that topic today. Instead of looking at the number of days before acceptance, though, I want to look at the number of rejections before acceptance. Like that first article, I’ll split my findings into flash fiction and short stories.
We’ll use mostly the same stories in that last article (one new addition) and start with short stories.
|A Point of Honor||10|
|The Past, History||8|
|Reading the Room||5|
Some big numbers there, huh? The average number of rejections for these ten stories is almost nine. But before we start trying to figure out why, let’s look at flash fiction and see how much of a difference a change in story length makes.
|What Kind of Hero||10|
|When the Lights Go On||10|
|Do Me a Favor||0|
|Far Shores and Ancient Graves||2|
|Time Waits for One Man||0|
|His Favorite Tune||0|
|The Night, Forever, and Us||2|
Well, that looks a little different, doesn’t it? The average number of rejections before I sold these flash pieces is three, and as you can see, four of them sold on the first try (I’ve never done that with a short story, by the way). There are two ten spots up there, but those really are anomalies in my flash submission archive.
If you were to look at all the stories I’ve published, you’d see the numbers I’ve presented for flash fiction and short stories are not just sample sizes. The average number of rejection for all the flash fiction I’ve published is just over two, and the average number for short stories is just over seven. But why? Let me briefly reiterate my theories from the last article, which also apply here, and add one more.
Thanks for indulging me in another bit of rejectomancy, and I hope the whys and wherefores I presented held some small bit of wisdom. Probably not, but a guy can hope. 🙂