Making sense

Anne Lamott, on writing ...

"We are a species that needs and wants to understand who we are. Sheep lice do not seem to share this longing, which is one reason why they write so little. But we do. We have so much we want to say and figure out.”

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Rejection: The New Yorker (not as bad as I thought)

March 6: I sent "F & M," a short story I'd written at MacDowell, to The New Yorker. I knew it was a long and ambitious shot. Wasn't holding my breath for a bite, although I did entertain several fantasies, on days the TNY landed in my mailbox (I'm a subscriber), that before my August birthday I would see "F & M" in print.
Thursday: A rejection email came. (We regret that we are unable to use the enclosed material. Thank you for giving us the opportunity to consider it. Sincerely, The Editors)
Friday: I spent the day glued to CNN watching the Boston Marathon bombing manhunt. Forgot about my New Yorker rejection.
Today: While Suspect No. 2 is hospitalized and the city of Boston returns to the streets (and beats the Kansas City Royals out at Fenway), I slogged up to my writing room, where I sit now, at my desk, processing my rejection. Here's what I feel, truthfully: Big Effing Deal. Three people died watching a race on a bright sunny Monday, other spectators lost limbs and loved ones. People in West, Texas, died when a fertilizer plant exploded. Hundreds injured. Homes and lives destroyed.
It would be inhumane and pitiful, really, to mourn the loss of a story that won't see print in a magazine that has far more important pieces to publish these days.

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