Reasons for rejection: the literary magazine POV

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For those of you writing novels....

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Marc Joan

Aug 26, 2014
See the following link for one lit mag's summary of why they have rejected stories in the previous month:

Great rejection tag cloud too:
:eek: What a crusher. :)I don't see 'boring,' 'illiterate', 'shocking,' 'copy-cat' or 'offensive.' Maybe those will turn up in the cloud another month. We are warned.
Sweet o_O

In fact, few/none of those are the underlying/real reason for rejection. They may be comments passed by editors, but don’t run away with the idea that “my piece would have been accepted had it not been so exposition-heavy / anecdotal / melodramatic” etc.

Good writers have made all those mistakes, and plenty more.

There is really only one reason that a piece or even a manuscript is accepted - and that is because it has made at least one person, and most likely several internally, feel strongly about it.

Aim to do that – and you’ll do rather well :)
The agent nails it. We're not to be boring and leave people cold. What the cloud isn't saying is 'I didn't give a damn.' So if it does its job, someone's going to hate it for the same reasons someone else loves it. It's the only aim that makes reading worthwhile. A book demands time, I don't want my own wasted so I'd better not waste other people's.
Susan Hill terrified me with one of her early novels, 'I'm The King Of The Castle.'
It terrified me because the child desperately needed help, his mother saw only what she needed to see, and I was reduced to being a helpless onlooker.
Years later, we have her, 'The Woman In Black.'
Far more famous, mega film and all that, but I can't see it as progress for her as a writer, just, meh. I just feeeel :rolleyes:.
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The numbers say it all - 233 submissions, 5 acceptances. It is not clear if the 1 re-write request is part of the 5 or a 6th. acceptance. Whichever way it is, those numbers say it all.

Interesting article, thanks for posting the link Marc Joan.
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Fanfare! Author talks in action

For those of you writing novels....