Before mercury, my blood used to fill thermometers.

Friday, August 23, 2013

I've been getting along for long before you came into the play.

Being upset over rejection is validity itself. I have a cool approach to it, having totally lost days being raw about rejection. But as a gesture, this latest rejection was special. In a positive way, that is, which is circumstantial. On a different day this would have pulverized.

Because what does obliterate me without fail is a non-response or having to chase for a "no." When I know an option is closed to me, I can glide away for others. But sitting around, waiting for rejection only to find that the other party did not think of me enough to tell me "no" — that only reinforces my lack of control.

That said, I've been angry with myself. I submitted my first query to the Paris Review. I love the Paris Review, I hold the editors in high esteem, and if I want to someday have work appear there, I need to submit work to it. This year's been intense, and I stressed out so much about unleashing it to the postal service that I didn't include a SASE in order to receive my rejection — which, let us be real, I anticipated. The fact that I'd denied myself the opportunity to get rejected and have the evidence that I had tried for something I'd endeavored to do for years — my patience with myself was already up at the time.

But I received a rejection from The Paris Review via email! And, even though the remark begs editorializing with the likes of "sincerely," "really," — that was a very kind, considerate thing, uneditorialized. Reading submissions takes a long time, I didn't want to submit the work elsewhere until I knew I wouldn't be putting any editor at a disadvantage — and now I can move on. Which is action, which is empowering, which is what I need. And as a reminder that I had made that query in the first place — I feel like I haven't done anything in half a year, and the reminder that I have taken steps towards what I want is reassuring.

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