#100rejections — August & September Totals

STILL RECOVERING from the Summer of Transition, so literary activity has come to a screeching halt out of family necessity. In fact, any activity I’ve had in recent months has been from submissions earlier in the year, but hey, it counts. I am including this blog post as a way of creating a through-line until November, when I anticipate ramping back up. Until then….

Accountability check-in! But first, what is #100rejections anyway?

I have decided to set the literary goal of accumulating 100 rejections this calendar year to facilitate sustained efforts toward publication. Submitting multiple poems to one market and having them all rejected counts as one rejection. Having any number of poems in the packet accepted means that submission counts as one acceptance.

August, 2017 — 3 Rejections, 0 Acceptances, 0 New Submissions
Year to Date, 66 / 10 / 69

  • LitMag, Rejection
  • The Paris Review, Rejection*
  • Memorious, Rejection

September, 2017 — 2 Rejections, 0 Acceptances, 0 New Submissions
Year to Date, 68 / 10 / 69

  • Calgary Poetry Contest, Rejection
  • The Southeast Review, Rejection*

*The journals marked with an asterisk (*) satisfy my secondary literary goal of submitting to as many top-tier journals as possible. See my January Totals post for details.

Tune in next month for October tallies (including one Acceptance!). Details on that and my strategy for making a comeback by the end of the year in the next #100rejections post. Happy submitting!

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“The aroused scientist” (2010)

Amphibi.us is now defunct, but before that, they published this (no archive available):

The aroused scientist
First appeared in Amphibi.us: Watterlogged Words (May 2010)

The aroused scientist
walks bow-legged across the crisp split
of her wanton wholeness,
stepping spider-oblique
among her nettle-spring dreams
and the crisis/opportunity of motion.

The green burr-sparks stick
in odd, arrhythmic places,
collect in the overlapping buzz of crickets
until she is 12 again,
coarse and brash,
curved in time and space,
picking at her socks
against the persistent seeds,
or running on sidewalks that rhyme,
wearing tomboy-striped shirts
and eating pepper-weed to see if it’s poison
and she never gets sick, she is alive—
animal all loose in her
and divine.

 

#100rejections — July Totals

Note: Life continues to throw me for summer loops, so literary activity has come almost to a screeching halt out of family necessity. I am including this blog post here as a way of creating a throughline until the Fall, when I anticipate ramping back up. Until then….

Accountability check-in! But first, what is #100rejections anyway?

I have decided to set the literary goal of accumulating 100 rejections this calendar year to facilitate sustained efforts toward publication. Submitting multiple poems to one market and having them all rejected counts as one rejection. Having any number of poems in the packet accepted means that submission counts as an acceptance. I’m aiming for 120 submissions by September 30 to accomplish this.

July, 2017 — 7 Rejections, 0 Acceptances, 0 New Submissions
Year to Date, 63 / 10 / 69

  • Augur Magazine, Rejection
  • PANK Magazine (again), Rejection*
  • The Atlantic (ghost), Rejection*
  • Heron Tree, Rejection
  • Honeysuckle Chapbook Contest, Rejection
  • Monarch Review, Rejection
  • Blackbird, Rejection

*The journals marked with an asterisk (*) satisfy my secondary literary goal of submitting to as many top-tier journals as possible. See my January Totals post for details.

Tune in next month for August tallies (such as they may be….)!

#100rejections — June Totals

Accountability check-in! But first, what is #100rejections anyway?

I have decided to set the literary goal of accumulating 100 rejections this calendar year to facilitate sustained efforts toward publication. Submitting multiple poems to one market and having them all rejected counts as one rejection. Having any number of poems in the packet accepted means that submission counts as an acceptance. I’m aiming for 120 submissions by September 30 to accomplish this.

June, 2017 — 8 Rejections, 4 Acceptances, 5 New Submissions (oopsy)
Year to Date, 56 / 10 / 69

  • Diode, Rejection*
  • Wildhood Project, Acceptance
  • After the Pause, Rejection
  • The New Yorker, Rejection*
  • Guernica, Rejection*
  • Frontier Poetry, Rejection
  • BOAAT Journal, Rejection
  • Salome, Rejection
  • Rise Up Review, Acceptance
  • Sixth Finch, Rejection
  • World Enough Writers Beer, Wine & Spirits Anthology, Acceptance
  • Onyx Neon Shorts, Acceptance (?)**

*The journals marked with an asterisk (*) satisfy my secondary literary goal of submitting to as many top-tier journals as possible. See my January Totals post for details.

**This one is still debatable to me – a poem I had withdrawn from this packet was originally accepted by this market, and when I called their attention to the withdrawal email I’d sent, they kindly inquired about the availability of a second poem in the packet instead. The catch is I have not heard back yet confirming they are definitely taking it. We’ll see what happens!

Noteworthy to me, I’m more than half way to my goal of 100 rejections at the 6 month mark, and June ended up being my densest acceptance month to date. Hooray for the midway successes!

This was a challenging and time-consuming month in terms of Life Activities. Summer started so childcare issues came to the fore, and with my daughter’s father away on a job contract, all childcare planning fell to me, as did the childcare rearranging as plans slipped through my fingers with alarming and exasperating regularity. Between missing her daddy and graduating from her favorite school, my little had a lot of needs and processing to work through, so that is what we did. I definitely fell off the submission wagon as a result, but that’s how it goes sometimes, and I regret nothing. In related news, my daughter is being well cared for, and I am getting an A in Literary Theory, which, can I just say, is a mind-blowing class, and completely relevant to certain cultural and social ills we are experiencing today. Just sayin’. Support the arts. They are trying to support you.

Tune in next month for July tallies!

#100rejections — May Totals

Accountability check-in! But first, what is #100rejections anyway?

I have decided to set the literary goal of accumulating 100 rejections this calendar year to facilitate sustained efforts toward publication. Submitting multiple poems to one market and having them all rejected counts as one rejection. Having any number of poems in the packet accepted means that submission counts as an acceptance. I’m aiming for 120 submissions by September 30 to accomplish this.

May, 2017 — 14 Rejections, 0 Acceptances, 16 New Submissions
Year to Date, 48 / 6 / 64

  • Sutra Press, Rejection
  • Brittany Noakes Poetry Award, Rejection
  • concīs, Rejection
  • Rattle: Poets Respond, Rejection*
  • Santa Ana River Review, Rejection*
  • Copper Nickel, Rejection*
  • Third Coast Fiction & Poetry Contest, Rejection*
  • Chroma Magazine, Ghost rejection**
  • Beullah Rose Poetry Prize, Rejection
  • Plume Poetry (again), Rejection
  • Bellevue Literary Review, Rejection
  • Hematopoiesis Press, Rejection
  • The Sun Magazine, Rejection*
  • Bracken Magazine, Rejection

*The journals marked with an asterisk (*) satisfy my secondary literary goal of submitting to as many top-tier journals as possible. See my January Totals post for details.

**Some markets will only respond to the authors whose work they accept for publication, meaning if your work is not accepted you will simply never get a definitive answer. With the uncertainties already inherent in the submission process (like technical issues, lost email, etc), this is a deal-killer for me in terms of where I will choose to submit. While this non-response policy is usually stipulated in the market’s submission guidelines, occasionally a market will not advertise their non-response policy, or may change their policy after I’ve submitted. With Chroma, my submission had gone well past the estimated response time according to Duotrope, and when I looked at the guidelines on the website again, the journal was no longer accepting poetry. I took this to be a so-called “ghost rejection.”

Tune in next month for June tallies!

“Song to a Mirror” (2011)

The Furnace Review is now defunct, but before that, they published this (no archive available):

Song to a mirror
First appeared in The Furnace Review (2011)

5/2 was the day you got good at “Whatever,”
that game of leaving-first without leaving.
You’d had the scent of happiness
over that last hill this morning,
but now it’s lost,
dispersed into untraceable atoms
across the neighborhood—

the same neighborhood where things have changed,
and M_____ and R____ stand in the yard screaming
for two hours in the morning.
“You promised me something!”
I don’t deserve you!
and you didn’t know what that meant, either,
not really.

Bending without breaking
is easier than it seems,
and more dangerous.
It leads to standing in yards at 7am
and hurling decibels at your love
who volleys them back,
well-placed arcs that shred the neighborhood
with their fictions we believe.

Nearly 40,
on loan to the planet,
you believed in “special” until this morning
when you lost the scent of that, too,
in the untraceable atmosphere.
It must be fluttering among the dogwood blooms
and Confederate jasmine—
40 feet up the pine, out of sight
among the unremarkable tree limbs:
you’re just like everyone else
and you’ve lost so many poems that way,
you can’t possibly be bitter—
maybe now you can get some sleep.

#100rejections — April Totals

Accountability check-in! But first, what is #100rejections anyway?

I have decided to set the literary goal of accumulating 100 rejections this calendar year to facilitate sustained efforts toward publication. Submitting multiple poems to one market and having them all rejected counts as one rejection. Having any number of poems in the packet accepted means that submission counts as an acceptance. I’m aiming for 120 submissions by September 30 to accomplish this.

April, 2017 — 6 Rejections, 1 Acceptance, 11 New Submissions
Year to Date, 34 / 6 / 48

  • New Delta Review, Rejection
  • Reservoir, Rejection*
  • Gulf Coast, Rejection*
  • Words Dance, Acceptance
  • The Emily Dickinson First Book Award, Rejection
  • American Poetry Review, Rejection*
  • Likely Red, Rejection

*The journals marked with an asterisk (*) satisfy my secondary literary goal of submitting to as many top-tier journals as possible. See my January Totals post for details.

Tune in next month for May tallies!