Does the fact that the person who sends you the rejection letter signs a name, which turns out to belong to a real person (You find out, of course, by googling) — does that make the rejection an “encouraging” one?  Or does the editor always sign her/his name?

Does the fact that nowhere in the letter does it mention the title of your piece —  is that a bad sign?  But, then, how do you know which piece you sent them?  It was such a long time ago!  For that matter, how do they remember?

Today you started writing a new story, and it was so exciting.  For, like, 20 minutes.  Then you remembered that your first line —  you had read it somewhere.  So you decided to google it, just to make sure.  And the first time you googled the line, you drew a blank.  So you kept on writing.  But after a half hour more, you suddenly thought you remembered the name of the writer whose work had that line.  And you googled the line and the writer together, and —  BINGO!  You hit on the story.  Which, yup, had the exact same first line (Short:  only three words.)

And now, you’re wondering:  Is that plagiarism?  Even though it was subconscious?  How could the writer’s story have seeped into your subconscious like that?  It must have been at least a decade since you read that story!

And you got so un-nerved, you decide to quit writing for the day.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.


  1. July 12, 2010 at 10:58 pm

    Oh gosh, this happens to me ALL THE TIME and I suspect to many others. But please don’t quit, if only for the day. Just keep writing and writing and writing and if plagiarism happens or even if nothing happens you still wrote.

    Yours in writing,

  2. July 12, 2010 at 11:30 pm

    It’s so strange, that it happened! OK, I’ll try and continue. Tomorrow.

  3. July 13, 2010 at 2:30 am

    Did my prior message make it through?

  4. July 13, 2010 at 2:31 am

    If not, you might have a look at a piece I posted on rejection at the above-referenced site.

    • July 13, 2010 at 2:48 am


      I didn’t see a prior message, only the two above. But I clicked on your name and it linked to your blog!

      I’ll hunt for the post on rejections. I’m happy to meet a fellow sufferer — oops, I meant writer!

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