Good News

“Second Thoughts” was rejected! From an anthology called “Spark”.

Yes, this really is good news. To see why, here is the e-mail:

Thank you for sending us “Second Thoughts.” We appreciate you considering “Spark: A Creative Anthology” as a potential home for your writing!

We have decided not to include this piece in an upcoming volume of our anthology. This is an issue of content, not quality.

In order to understand why your work is not a match for this publication, please review the “What We Are Not Accepting” page at We understand that previous versions of this page were a bit unclear, so we have recently expanded and clarified descriptions of the content and themes which are not a good fit for Spark‘s format or target audience.

One of the things we consider when judging when to decline a piece based on content is the importance language plays in the story. A few bits of strong language that can be toned down while preserving the voice of the story and of the author are left open to consideration. If these changes would be detrimental to that voice, we prefer to decline the submission rather than ask writers to sacrifice the integrity of the work.

If you have other writing that is more suited to our needs, we would be pleased to hear from you again in the future.

Best of luck with this piece.

If you know the publishing industry, you know that a personalized rejection where you’re told that the problem is NOT the quality of your piece, that is good news.

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4 Responses to Good News

  1. Did you think about submitting to Clockwork Phoenix?

    • I did! I dislike two things about it:

      1) You don’t hear back from him until he’s read all of the submissions

      2) No simultaneous submissions

      2 is pretty normal, but coupled with 1 that means that whatever I submit will be gaining dust for quite awhile.

  2. Ilíon says:

    What!? You used *gasp* (ahem) “language”?

    And I thought you were such a nice boy!

    • In all seriousness, “Second Thoughts” is a wildly out of character story for me. It is not sci-fi and one of the main characters curses like a sailor, whereas literally everything else I’ve written has been sci-fi or fantasy and the worst word any character ever uses was “bitch”, once.

      I’m just happy they didn’t dislike it otherwise!

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