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Archive for September, 2011

What I Like & the Things I Dislike

There are things I like, such as Submishmash. It is a great tool where I can submit and see if my work has been received or is “in progress.” I also like that notification is sent when I submit–and thus far I’ve known when my pieces have been accepted or rejected through this system.

Now, I’m not happy about rejections, but it’s good to receive notification. What irks me (yesterday) is that I submitted to a ‘Review’ that required I put in all my info to submit and that was it. (There are several Reviews and Journals that use this same format and I’m finding it irksome in general that no one has put it into a be all end all system like Submishmash so I don’t have to fill in the same data set for each Journal/Review that uses this same form.) Really, that was it! No email stating I’d successfully completed the registration process, no confirmation that I’d submitted. Ok, fine, as a writer, I’m used to long waits. Then, according to Duotrope (another thing I like) this Review had sent out many form rejections. I still hadn’t heard anything, so I signed into the site and found my work had been rejected. WTF? They couldn’t even send out a form letter? {Yes, I checked, the email address I entered was correct.}

Whatever.

I’ll get over it, but in the realm of electronic submissions, seriously, as a courtesy, maybe a brief email with “Sorry. No.” as the message. Is that really too complicated?

This Review took less than two months to not tell me my work wasn’t good enough for them. At the other extreme, I received a rejection from a different Review. It took 502 days to get here. It was a form letter–but–across the bottom was scrawled, ‘Try us again?’ [You betcha!] To be honest, after a year and a day, I’d marked that submission down as lost/never responded.

Sigh.

I guess my main complaint is that I try to be courteous when I submit. I submit simultaneously sometimes. It would be nice to be shown the same tiny bit of respect from publications.

I submitted a humorous column to a contest. {Yes, I what some of you may be thinking, but it didn’t turn out that bad, -I don’t think.} Do I think I’ll get the job? Sure, why not? Ha! But the deal was right out there in front. They said, “We’ll let you know if we got your submission. We’ll get so many that we’ll only let you know if your work is advancing to the next round. Winners announced on the 23rd.”

Thank you decent people at McSweeney’s Internet Tendencies for giving everyone the low down. Even though I haven’t heard from them, and I expect I was dropped out of the first round, I am grateful that the parameters were drawn up and I clearly understood them and submitted willingly to those terms. I like not having to guess!

What I don’t like is my printer deciding to play dead. I’ve poked it with a stick. Unplugged it completely. Massaged its cartridges. I have no idea what happened to it. It was fine, then nothing. It’s distressing that it doesn’t even make any noises or flicker a light when the day before it was printing just fine.

I dislike technology and think it’s stupid when I don’t know what is going on with it.

My house is in CHAOS. I dislike this very, very much. I knew it would be chaotic for a bit while the slight modifications were going on: new door, new window, rewiring, light & fan combo moved, new wall. Right. But I can tolerate only so much. Since I can’t change the speed of the construction, I’ve been getting all my papers and stories and poems organized. Editors beware! I’m prepared to submit the good stuff. And if you don’t like it, well, at least say so. Ok? A simple little email saying “No thanks.” I’ll respect you so much if you do. But I’ll really, really like it better if you say, “We’d like to publish your work,” instead. Just saying…

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On the Eve of September

The first draft of this post began roughly at 10 after 9 p.m. on the 31st while slipping into the most enjoyable, earned bubble bath. Tomorrow I have another treat, too. I promised myself I could read Nice Girls and Other Stories by Cezarija Abartis.

I finished you see. Early even. Is Ellie’s Elephants perfect? No. But it is at the point where (I hope) a copy editor can make sense of it and fix the gaffes that I cannot see.

This draft of EE is so much better than the first, but I could be daft and delusional. I want to talk about this book. It’s so much more than I thought it would be and I love it. Tomorrow, when I transcribe this and add it to my blog, I’m not going to be this happy. I know. All happiness is fleeting and terribly temporary.

I’ve been able to push aside housework and correspondence. I mean Sheila called this evening for a moment and the reason was because she and I hadn’t talked for a while. We haven’t. I know I do make for the lousiest responder to email, but to neglect one of my best friends for weeks when generally I talk to her at least twice a week? Shameful. It’s a good thing Husband and I share a bed so we at least see each other on a daily basis.

There has been a lot of shite going on in the background while I wrapped up this draft. Some I’ve been able to ignore, some I couldn’t. The changing out of the door–once the biggest change going on–is so small in comparison now. Windows, walls, old boyfriends, tomato harvests, wild grape hunts have all converged to be larger issues to thoughtfully consider and attend to. Plus, my beautiful niece is getting married in October. I just received the invitation yesterday and plan to talk to Husband about taking a day off of work to be there.(BTW, all of my nieces are beautiful–I truly lucked out that way.)

Funny how life goes on when you’re ignoring it in a race against a deadline.

So, two weeks from now, I hope to report  that I’ve caught up on at least one aspect of my life, even if it’s just checking in with you and asking how you are doing.

My bubbles are gone. I going to shower off then take a walk out to the pergola and concentrate on being grateful.

Thank you for stopping by!

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