Mental note
May 30, 2010

Don’t submit anything to Going Down Swinging again. Fortunately, i don’t write much non-SF stuff, so the likelihood of me needing to is very slim.

Why, you ask?

Well, let me get this out of the way first: i have absolutely no issue with form rejections. Editors are very busy people and in no way do i expect them to make personal remarks in a rejection. It’s nice when they do, but form is fine.

Except when it’s a mass form rejection entitled ‘Dear Writers and Artists’ and which then goes on to explain in detail why it would’ve been far too difficult to send out a simple ‘Dear Samuel Mae, We’ve decided not to use your work at this time.’ The explanation implies that instead of sending out a rejection when they initially read the story and decide they don’t want it they put it aside into an electronic pile and send out a mass rejection all at once. And looking at Duotrope’s RSS feed for responses reported that indeed looks like it’s the case. Feels very inefficient to me, because i truly doubt that all three editors consult each other over every story. So why not send out the rejection when the story is actually rejected? That eliminates a whole step in their process. And keep the big long explanation in the R. That’s fine. Just put my name on the damn thing.

Usually i probably wouldn’t be bothered by the mass form, but this market is very persnickety about format (and their preferred isn’t typical ms format), and requires authors and artists to fill out a whole cover sheet of details about the story and themselves. Again, this is apparently for the sake of efficiency, but i remember thinking, just over two months back when i filled it in, ‘this is all information that could be included in the subject header of the email (FICTION SUB (or whatever it is I’m submitting): name of story by my name (word count)) and what’s not should be included on the first page of the sub (name, address, email, etc) anyway.’

So, after making me jump through all those hoops (inserting their cover page into my document, filling it out, reformatting said document to their requirements) couldn’t they at least give me the courtesy of my name on the rejection?

Hmm, i’m obviously grumpy tonight.

*step away from the keyboard, son, and take a few deep breaths*

And sleep. Some sleep would be good.