More & Less.

I celebrated prematurely, we are not through yet, but–I can see a break in the clouds–Vincent’s not well, yet, but he’s less unwell than he was.

So that’s enough of that.


An interesting thing about submitting to Subtropics is that they only respond via email, whether you submit electronically or post, so no SASEs are required. Today, after about a month, I received an email from them. Rejection–but nicely done!

Dear Marie,

Thank you for your submission to Subtropics. After careful consideration, we have decided that we cannot find a place for your artful poems in our upcoming issues. I wish you the best of luck in placing these poems elsewhere.



Now, I’m pretty sure this is a form rejection, but that one word, “artful,” cushions the blow, makes it sound more personal than it probably is. Note that “probably.” I will always have a soft spot in my heart for Subtropics, even though they rejected me, because they called my poems “artful.” Isn’t that wily of them?

If you’ve been rejected by them, please, tell me, what did your email say?

6 responses to “More & Less.”

  1. Oh, no — I hope that Vincent feels well soon, and that this was just a temporary return to illness!

    It’s amazing how much one word in a rejection can make a difference. Rattle has a very nice rejection as well, and it made me feel much better about the whole not-getting-published thing.

    And somehow I feel better about e-mails than those tiny slips of colored paper …

  2. Oh, I like those slips of colored paper!–especially when there’s a little note scrawled on them, illegibly or not. But I save my slips, and the colored ones look so pretty in the file…

    Vincent IS better, yay! Thank you!

  3. I’ve been rejected by them and NO they didn’t say my work was artful. Wah. They love you more than they love me. Which is only fair, because I do, in fact, write weird, weird short stories.

    This is what they said:

    Thanks very much for sending us your work. We have now had a chance to read it, and feel that it isn’t right for SUBTROPICS. But do keep us in mind for the future.

    It took them about two seconds to send it too.

  4. In their defense, fiction & poetry have different editors, so only one person loves me more than he loves you, but probably only because he didn’t get to read your weird, weird story…

    But maybe I should send them more poems! LOL Thanks, Lily! xo Marie

  5. Marie, Do you think it’s pathetic that I googled “subtropics rejection” and discovered that in somebody else’s fiction rejection the editor didn’t ask to be kept “in mind for the future” and so I’ve decided that they’re really just waiting for me to send them my next story because that’s the one they want and have wanted all along, even before it had been written? They just knew.

  6. No, I don’t think it’s pathetic — I think it’s Genius! It never occurred to me to google that. Thanks for the tip!

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