I submitted three poems to a fairly new journal on March 2, thinking its vision definitely fits the kind of poetry I write. Well, was I ever wrong. I received a lengthy rejection letter from the editor in chief yesterday – does he have nothing better to do than write long rejection letters?
Certainly I appreciate the time he spent in writing the letter and certainly I know that the poems I submit might not fit the subjective point of views of those who make the publishing decisions, but the way he characterized the critique criteria in his email to me boggled my mind: “Content was good or lacking; quality was good or deficient.”
My questions were: lacking in what, deficient in what, and even good in what? And I felt so strongly about it I actually wrote the editor back. And then he wrote another lengthy letter back to me and again I ask doesn’t he have something better to do? And, of course he turned it all around. He thinks I am complaining about his decision not to publish my work. No. I totally accept that. I was just complaining about the confusing nature of his critique and his rating scheme.
Actually it is all laughable. I sent the back and forth emails to my cousin Larry who publishes our poetry anthology, The Great American Poetry Show. His response is too funny. I’ll quote some but not all of what he said:
I WOULD SAY THAT YOUR POEMS ARE EITHER GOOD OR LACKING OR SIMULTANEOUSLY BOTH OR NEITHER AND MAYBE LACKING IN GOOD OR SO GOOOOOOD THEY’RE LACKING IN BAD.
And, now I’m finished with this chapter. I’ll not respond to Mr. Editor again. And, I’ll probably not submit to that publication again. I’m doing quite okay publishing-wise without him, thank you very much.
And, don’t forget. Volume 2 of The Great American Poetry Show will appear later this year – it’s bigger and better than Volume 1.