2023-05-15 The Mystery of Finding Treasure

We’re halfway through the month of May and for some measure of money and faith, I can offer an update that I’m still on the right track. 

Saying “no” agrees with me and I’m getting better at it. I’ve effectively said no to one professional public appearance and also backed out of a personal commitment that I wasn’t super keen on. 

My anxiety seems to be humming along on a low, manageable frequency and I’m not feeling much angst-y dread when I wake up in the morning (it’s not zero, but it’s definitely an improvement). I’ve also been very heads-down on personal and professional projects and and gotten a lot done these past few weeks. That feels good. 

I’m getting more rejections than ever in my inbox but that’s because I’ve recently tripled-down on my submission efforts. More out = more in. And though my dauber was down yesterday because my latest sub to Prairie Schooner was returned with that big ❌ (and on Mother’s Day no less—boooo! 👎🏻), I still have a tiny warm fuzzy for an acceptance I received earlier in the week. My first in over six months. 🥰

These competing feels are probably why brain is super focused on the topic of publishing and the subjective nature of acceptance and rejection. Only the universe can guess why a reader or editor would “yes” something that so many others have passed on. Or downvote a piece of writing that others have raved about. 

It’s the same mystery, I think, coming from a similar place as a poem might in the first place. And these sister origins can cause a big sway in one direction. It’s the difference between just reading a poem and feeling it. In the end, I’m sure it comes down to life experience. Plus some people just have more capacity for acceptance and the ability to see the merits in something else, be it a person, situation, or poem. 

I’m grateful to the readers and editors of poetry for The Naugatuck River Review for what they saw in my poem and accepting it for their Fall issue. For the 82 other places that either rejected it or still had it under consideration… 👋.. thanks for reading. 

I wasn’t kidding when I said it has been six months since my last acceptance. That was Midwest Quarterly late last fall and that quarterly issue is, I think, due to be published any minute now. So that’s worth celebrating too. 💃💃💃

Still, six months is a long time and in that time and with the sheer amount of rejection, it’s no wonder that I was feeling really terrible about my writing. My confidence in it reaching a new all-time low. 

Good for me that this rejection just fuels my fire to send more work out. Stoking that fire is also a good substitute for working on the ember in the ashes of inspiration for generating new work. A few times this weekend I had ideas for new poems, but I didn’t pursue them. Just let them pass by like thoughts during a meditation session. 

I subscribe to the notion that if they are really worth working on, the idea will come to me again. One has already shown up a couple of times so I suppose I’ll try to get that down before it slips away, forever lost to the ether. 

Well folks.. that’s as good a place as any to wrap for today. My time is almost up anyway. Those groceries don’t buy themselves. 

Until next time. Peace and love, 

~Miss SugarCookie

2 responses to “2023-05-15 The Mystery of Finding Treasure”

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