Sub·mit (səb mit′) — origin: ME submitten < L submittere < sub-, under, down + mittere, to send

It’s September, the first days of autumn — officially here in two days — beginning of migration season — birds & leaves — colder temps and colds. Naturally, my children are celebrating by both of them coming down with whoppers of colds. I’m not the nervous type, but Aidan’s breathing so concerned me last night that we ended up in the ER. Diagnosis, bronchitis, no need for x-rays — at least not yet — we don’t seem to be dealing with pneumonia — at least not yet. Keep an eye on him, etc.

They’re both pretty miserable & subdued, one of the side benefits of which is periodic interludes of peace & quiet, sadly uncharacteristic of our usual household. Which is to say that I’m going to use this fleeting time to catch up on some reading & (gasp!) maybe even do some writing.

But before I go: I always have poems out there, but September is also the month when open submissions begin for many journals, and hence the month that many writers concentrate on sending their submissions, the Fall Submission Blitz (FSB), if you will. In honor of  FSB, below are two witty & simpatico articles on rejection. Let loose the Kraken!

  • Corey Ginsberg on “The Two Faces of Rejection”:  Rejection from the editor’s side and, of course, the writer’s — “You rock fetal on the floor next to the SASEs, and wish you had other life skills. What about juggling?”
  • Claire Guyton on “Fondling Failure”: Because I’ve saved every one of my rejections since the very first submission I made at the green green age of 19, and I’m so glad I did. They’re historical documents, that history being mine. Rejections aren’t, unfortunately, irreplacable — as long as you submit there are bound to be more — but if I’m doing something right, hopefully they’ll be at least unique, with small pen indentations of encouraging words. And that’s definitely worth saving.

Pleasures of the Quotidian.

After what has been a time of submission silence, and week of personal strangeness, this evening I received a clutch of emails from journals, and not an actual rejection among them.

  • One acknowledged receiving my submission (sent 44 days ago), and assured me I’d hear from them again with 4-8 weeks.
  • One apologized for the delay in responding to my submission, and assured me that I’d hear from them again soon.
  • One apologized that I never heard from them last spring (I learned they rejected me from an emailed response in June to an emailed query I’d sent in May — their records indicated mailing my SASE o’ rejection in March. I never got it.). And although I was still rejected, they would love to see more of my work.

And each of these emails was sent utterly without provocation — I promise I’ve been patient, and have done no prodding & poking of editors. Curious, these sudden displays of courtesy!

All in all, an apt bookend to my week — the holding pattern holds.

*

In other news, today I received my copy of Anne Haines‘ new chapbook, Breach, from Finishing Line Press — very elegant! Into the queue it goes — I can’t wait to spend some time with it.

Cave Wall Redux.

I might be spending every day with my hands in the guts of the computers at work as thunderstorms continue to wreak havoc on our network, but otherwise I’m having a great week!

I received notification today that Cave Wall has accepted 2 poems for issue 5, Winter/Spring 2009 — hurrah! I love this poetry journal, so while any acceptance is cause for a gleeful (temporary) ego-trip, this is especially thrilling for me — hurrah! hurrah!

The editor, Rhett Iseman Trull, is also a wonderful poet, and was selected this year to be in the anthology Best New Poets 2008.

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