Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Clinical Rejection from BLR (Twice)

Yesterday, I received two (count them: 2) rejections from BLR's Literary Prize: one in fiction and one in nonfiction.  Here they are:

Dear Writer, Rejected

Thank you for submitting your work for the Bellevue Literary Review's literary prizes. We appreciate the efforts that have gone into this piece.

We were impressed by the enthusiastic response from the writing community. The volume was such that, unfortunately, a great deal of quality work had to be rejected. Please be assured that your piece was read thoroughly and given careful consideration. A list of contest winners may be found on our website, www.BLReview.org.

We wish you luck in placing this piece elsewhere, and apologize for not being able to offer a more personal reply.

Sincerely,

The Editors
Bellevue Literary Review
www.BLReview.org


NOTE: Please do not reply to this e-mail -- we are unable to respond personally to messages sent to this address.

AND AGAIN:

Dear Writer, Rejected

Thank you for submitting your work for the Bellevue Literary Review's literary prizes. We appreciate the efforts that have gone into this piece.

We were impressed by the enthusiastic response from the writing community. The volume was such that, unfortunately, a great deal of quality work had to be rejected. Please be assured that your piece was read thoroughly and given careful consideration. A list of contest winners may be found on our website, www.BLReview.org.

We wish you luck in placing this piece elsewhere, and apologize for not being able to offer a more personal reply.

Sincerely,

The Editors
Bellevue Literary Review
www.BLReview.org


NOTE: Please do not reply to this e-mail -- we are unable to respond personally to messages sent to this address.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Gee, which one hurt the most?

Anonymous said...

I just received the most wonderful personal rejection from the BLR - kind, thoughtful, with concrete and constructive ideas for improving the story.

In some ways, a good rejection is better than an acceptance. Maybe I just have a strong case of the don't-want-to-join-any-club-that-accepts-me blues....but as soon as a literary magazine says YES I remember all the times I read something lousy in their pages and thought "well if that's what passes for literature these days...." Suddenly it occurs to me that maybe I'm too good for that journal. And then that story is gone - out of my hands, published - and all hope for greatness goes with it.

Ah, but the "you almost made it!" It means they actually have standards and you are a good enough writer to have almost met them. "Your story was in the editor's backpack!" "You were in our final top ten!" You can imagine someone reading your story - loving it - fighting with their colleagues over its merits - reading it again and again, trying to decide if your Angolan contortionist is a more compelling main character than the other guy's anorexic dwarf. That's a beautiful feeling.

So I love the editors of the BLR. This week, anyway.

(Yes, it helps that the story was already accepted elsewhere. I sent them a retraction but I guess they missed it.)