poems, poetry, rejected, the writing process

Rejected: beeps, binaries & leftovers

Around this time last year I was much more knee-deep in excitings re: writing and people saying “yes we like this enough to commit pixels or ink and also our own endeavours to it”, but lately it’s been a big fat bag of no thankses landing on my doorstep. Sigh.

In the interests of full disclosure, then, here’s the latest list of poems that have been sent (back) to their maker:

“After the Beep” is one that’s been spoken of in terms of rejection before. If I flatter myself it’s a kind of quantum take on Xeno’s paradox if that makes any sense. Since I last sent it out and got it rejected by cordite I’d chopped it in half (I often find knocking the top off a poem can do wonders), but the folks at The Diagram passed on it all the same (I still haven’t cracked it for an actual made-of-words submission being accepted from yon diagrammers, despite their willingness to take found art and weird diagrams from me over the years, but never say never).

Anyway, I did some tweaking re: the stanza structure of “After the Beep”, setting it out in blank free-verse couplets (is that a thing? or have I just made it up?), and I must say I’m happier than I’ve ever been with that little poem, so it’s out there again, this time seeking a home at Antipodes, a journal I’ve never submitted to before. We shall see what we shall see.

Speaking of cordite, last week they chose to eschew a thingy that I’d sent them for their forthcoming Electronica issue: a little something I like to call “Binary Love” that I had lying around and which if I’m honest was only ever intended to be song lyrics for the novel I’ve been writing (or not writing) forever, about New Wave bands in Melbourne in the ’80s.

It’s sort of an attempt to emulate an album track from The Buggles’s Living in the Plastic Age: an austere, slightly cold, minimalist thing with a bit of a verse/chorus structure to it. I’d never considered submitting it to a journal before, but I thought it fit the Electronica theme well enough to give it a go. Not well enough after all, it would seem. Not sure what to do with it now – I’m fond of it, but I wonder if it’s too specific in its intention to go into the “for general submission” pile…

Also Overland sent me a polite little rejection (“we hope you will continue to send us your work”) for “Leftover Countdown”, which has previously graced this blog and which I thought might suit them for its however-tangential look at working life. Guess not. They still have two others of mine – one about pizza and one about windowcleaners – that I submitted at the same time, but these days they’re using that newfangled submishmash thingo and I had to submit each poem individually and I have no idea if it served them up in alphabetical order or chronologically by submission date or what, so there may still be happy news on the getting-published-by-Overland front in the near future.

I’m keeping busy, though, working on a few new bits and pieces and trotting a few others out to face their fate in the big wide et cetera. As well as the above five poems, I’ve still got around a dozen other poems and one fiction piece out there awaiting whatever it is that submissions await – acceptance? love? affirmation? – so breath shall be held and fingers crossed and what have you.

2 thoughts on “Rejected: beeps, binaries & leftovers”

  1. In my experience Antipodes ed Paul Kane is quite openminded (but not in a seventies key party moustache twirling way) and welcoming of new voices, good luck there. The love and affirmation side of it I leave to the Fates. Yrs in poetry, Melinda

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