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moonslice
10-19-2007, 07:24 AM
I'm trying to get a few personal essays published in different mags (print and online). I'm nowhere near a book.

My question, if you've gotten a rejection from a pub you thought your essay was perfect for, should you consider re-writing (even if just slightly) for a different pub before re-submitting?

I know that sometimes work gets rejected because there are so many entries and only so much space, but I still can't help wondering if I should try to make it better before sending out again.

What do you do? Keep sending until it gets accepted?

I mentioned this Q in the JHS thread in freelancing and CatMuse suggested I trot over here.

Thanks.

johnrobison
10-19-2007, 03:42 PM
I would only suggest rewriting if that makes it better. If it just makes it differenet . . . then I'd say leave it alone.

Rich
10-19-2007, 03:46 PM
When I get rejected I do take second looks at the piece. However, I don't change anything unless I'm sure it'll improve the piece.

Tymolee
10-19-2007, 11:38 PM
My question, if you've gotten a rejection from a pub you thought your essay was perfect for, should you consider re-writing (even if just slightly) for a different pub before re-submitting?

What do you do? Keep sending until it gets accepted?


It depends on what kind of comments the editor gave me. I've had several where I've said, "Duh - they're right." and others where I thought the editor was nuts.

Sometimes I do, however, rewrite things slightly to make it more tailored to the particular market I'm writing for (i.e. - more humorous, more poignant, etc.).

I send my stuff until it gets accepted somewhere... for instance I just had a parenting essay that was picked up which I wrote over three years ago. After querying several magazines, I shelved it because I thought I had exhausted the possible markets for it (I thought it was perfect for magazines like Brain, Child or Literary Momma and while I got very nice rejections from them, it was close but not quite good enough). However, I kept it in mind and when I saw another possiblity for it, I subbed to them. Lo and behold, they picked it up. And that's one I haven't done any major rewrites for.

moonslice
10-19-2007, 11:53 PM
I didn't get any comments from the editors. : (

Thanks for the replies. I find it difficult to shelve a piece, but I suppose I might have to eventually.

Tymolee
10-20-2007, 12:00 AM
I find it difficult to shelve a piece, but I suppose I might have to eventually.


Well, if you do, keep it in the back of your mind. You never know when something might pop up for it. :)

Kudra
10-20-2007, 02:49 AM
Thanks for the replies. I find it difficult to shelve a piece, but I suppose I might have to eventually.

After one rejection? No way!

Here's my process.
1. Write the essay to the best of my ability. Rewrite, edit, blah blah blah.
2. Get it critiqued. I belong to an online critique group.
3. I use the feedback and opinions to get the bugger through one last edit.
4. I submit.

Unless, there's something that I think needs serious changes, no revisions. What doesn't work for one editor, works for another. If you keep changing, you'll please no one. Least of all yourself. Give it your best. Once you're pleased with it, send it off. And send it off again. Keep doing so till you receive an acceptance.

moonslice
10-25-2007, 12:48 AM
Would anyone like to read one of my essays and give me some feedback? It doesn't have to be line for line, just a general opinion. I am concerned about posting it online since so many pubs want unpublished essays. I am not convinced posting online in forums doesn't count. Maybe I'm too paranoid.

But if you'd like to give it a whirl, PM me your email address. I have one that has been rejected twice (it's about pedicures and toes and society) and one that has been rejected once (it's about my first job out of college-teaching English to high schoolers).

I think I've found another market for the pedicures essay, but I'd have to trim it down from 869 words to 700. Eeek.

Thanks.