I'll be reading "Half Fish Tale, Half Ars Poetica" in the HARPY HYBRID REVIEW virtual reading next Saturday. Looking forward to it! Now for the important stuff: a long overdue haircut (my long time hair stylist is an anti-vaxxer and I need to find another), figuring out a background for Zoom (I usually Zoom in my study, which is overflowing with books and papers and pretty claustrophobic).
Submissions decisions are always hard. How long are you willing to wait to hear from a top magazine? Do you set your work aside while you wait and wait and wait? Or send it out widely? And if you do, do you send it to top magazines only? Then move down a tier after some rejections? For flash especially, is it better to be online than in print? For a future collection, is it better to leave most of the pieces unpublished? And even if you read magazines closely, it's hard to tell whether you're a good fit or not. Often you get rejections from magazines you thought were a perfect fit.
Still waiting on two top magazines where I've published before, for decisions on submissions I sent in January and February. Just sent a status query to the January magazine and got a very nice note back about how behind the editor is because of the pandemic, with a parenthetical reference to child care that left me feeling guilty. I have my fingers crossed on both of them.
I have a flash about a Zoom meeting that I thought was topical and timely but I haven't been able to place it. Rejection Saturday. Rejection Sunday. And then today, a long, Bartleby-tinged story where I started with just the top places (since it's not timely and I'm in no hurry and why not) just got an amazingly soft rejection from the venerable lit mag STORY of all places. They would "love a chance to read more of my writing IN THE NEAR FUTURE." Naturally I have nothing at all to send them. It's not often that I write a long story, and lately all of my energies have been tied up in The Lunatics' Ball. Well, I can treasure this anyway. Strange game where writers treasure rejections.
It's been raining, buckets and buckets, which ordinarily wouldn't be news, but this year it definitely is.
The sun is out and I've gotten four more rejections. One of the long story from a magazine where I submitted it in July (not so friendly as the one from STORY), and three CNF in one swoop. My horoscope didn't hint that I'd be a rejection magnet today. I'm afraid to open any more emails.
Even though I don't have an Instagram account (Facebook and Twitter feeling like more than enough for the present).
Big thanks to the wonderful writer Marcelle Heath for including me in her Apparel for Authors series. This was fun.
Really pleased to see "Half Fish Tale, Half Ars Poetica" up in the new issue of HARPY HYBRID REVIEW on "Myth." The great cover art is by Elena Valdés Chavarría.
Time to start thinking about what I'm going to say!
Reading the essay won't do, as it's not only online, but there's also an audio recording of me reading it online.
The first proofs I saw didn't include the Joseph Cornell shadow box and I was holding my breath, but the EIC Trish Murphy managed to post it and the art looks great.
And here's a surprise tweet this morning from the writer DeMisty D. Bellinger, who teaches at Fitchburg State University: "Teaching Jacqueline Doyle (@doylejacq) this morning. Taught this one last year and I think I'm going to keep it in my regular rotation:" Linked to … "Two Guys Carrying a Toilet Into Taco Bell."
So I wandered into the kitchen to tell Steve, who was eating breakfast, who said, "I think it should be compared to 'The Death of Ivan Illych' because they're both about existential angst." (When I told her, she said, "Yes! I see this!")
The good news I was waiting to announce. I'm thrilled that matchbook has nominated "The Madwoman on BART" for Best of the Net. MATCHBOOK is one of my very favorite magazines (I'm sorry they're on hiatus, and hope they come back), and this particular piece means a lot. Very encouraging for THE LUNATICS' BALL.
It turns out I'm doing a talk at the SUPERSTITION REVIEW launch event, not a reading, and last year's author talked about her process. This will take some thought, but I've got a couple of months to ponder it, and it's an honor to have been asked.
Some good news that I can't announce yet, but it gave me a boost. I've been hard at work on a big revision on something I wrote a couple of weeks ago about Freud and odalisques, a 2500-word essay that I hope to include in The Lunatics' Ball. Still wrestling with the organization of the collection, but i have some new ideas.
I just learned about the publication FIVE MINUTES last week when a description of the magazine was included in the bio of something that the editor Susanna Baird published: 100-word CNF that has to include something significant in your life that lasted 5 minutes. Which got me to thinking about significant moments I haven't written about, and remembering the time I was sure I saw my father at a concert at All Saints. Wrote it in one draft, sent it off, and now it's been accepted. It will come out in January.
Just finished recording "The Dream Lives of Objects" using the Garage Band app on my laptop (apparently I don't have it on my PC), and figured out how to convert it to an mp3 and send it to SUPERSTITION REVIEW and I was pretty proud of myself this afternoon.
And now this evening I get an email from their student editor-in-chief asking whether I'd be the guest reader at their launch. "We are very excited to feature your work in Issue 28! To celebrate the launch of each new issue, we host a virtual launch party that features a guest reader. We appreciate your work and your contributions to S[r]. Would you be available to present as our guest reader at our launch party on Tuesday, November 30? You would be given 10-15 minutes to give a reading or present any of your work. You are also welcome to share via screenshare."
The obvious thing would be to show the Joseph Cornell shadow box while I read the piece in their issue (hoping I can figure out that technology in advance, but surely I can). Maybe there's something less obvious. I've done several ekphrastic pieces, most recently the one on Munch, Picasso, and Dora Maar for TINY MOLECULES, and the feminist odalisque one I'm working on now. At any rate, really pleased by the honor.