I received my first rejection today for a particular submission. Perhaps that piece was too mature for the magazine, and too lengthy. The editor left a generous note, describing the fact that she ultimately did not understand what took place at the end of the story. The ending wasn’t something that I wanted to spell out to the reader, it was something that I wanted the reader to think about. Perhaps that was indeed a mistake.
I’ve reached an issue with the current material that I’ve been working on. Word Count! I’ve arranged the short story event by event in a “tasks” side bar in the novel software I’ve been using, and the only way it seems to land at the appropriate word count for short story submissions would be if I simply did not write some of the events that occur. It’s running on the long side already, as I’m used to writing longer material, but the action and pacing is great. I’m trying to determine if I should write the scenes, then trim them out later, or just not write them in order to meet the market’s specifications.