Rejected! (Part 1)

Prior to my foray into the world of paper clips and hanging files, I had a part-time job at Barnes & Noble, your friendly neighborhood/greedy corporate mega- bookstore. I enjoyed it as much as you could enjoy a part-time job working for a massive corporation that offered you inconsistent hours and a measly wage, which is to say, somewhat. However, probably the crowning moment of my experience there was just this past summer, the fated night that Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows was released. After an eight-hour shift beginning at 7pm, I went home and did what I normally do when I experience a weird, hilarious pop-cultural event– I wrote about it– a lot (25 pages, which is why I won’t post it here… but if you want to read it, just ask, and I’ll email it to you). Anyway, when I was done, I had something I was pretty proud of, and shared it with a few friends, one of whom asked if I had submit it anywhere, and that got me thinking. So, I looked up a few journals that published stuff I liked, and I submit it to two of them. A shot in the dark, basically just to say I had done it. After putting it in the mail, I didn’t really think about it again.

So now, a few days ago, I received this in the mail:

Gentle writer:

Please forgive me for returning your work and for not offering comments or suggestions. I would like to say something to make up for my ungraciousness, but I don’t think a few quick remarks would really help. The truth is I have so little space, I must return almost everything–99%–of what’s sent to me, including a lot that interests me and even some pieces I admire.

The important thing is this: Do not be discouraged by this or any other momentary setback. The road is long; the struggle must go on.

Then, too, the ways of the Muse are strange. When she does visit again, I hope you will give her my best regards.

Keep the faith.


Howard Junker



…I think I’ll have it framed.


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