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  • Writer's pictureerinkirsh

The Losing Game: Writing Acceptance 1/?

Sometimes a thing can seem like bad news, but it actually turns out to be good news. When I'm feeling bitter, I might say that we use that sentiment to console ourselves when faced with our own relentless mundanity, (I'm a blast at parties,) but that's just my own negative bullshit. The truth is, good news likes a masquerade ball as much as 90s teen fiction does and it dresses up all the time. Good news has an extensive tickle trunk. Good news masquerading as bad has looked like a lot of things for me over the years: not getting into my elementary school's arts program helped me avoid having the pompous music teacher who handed out detentions like religious fliers for home room. Getting ghosted by Captain Adventurer* meant saving myself from misogynistic humor and probably a broken leg. Getting let go from a book store job that I loved ended up throwing me face first back into the service industry, which inspired the piece this post is about. And today, good news came dressed up like fancy bad news in the form of this acceptance: *Yes, you.


Dear Erin, Thank you for submitting to the 2018 Cosmonauts Avenue Fiction Prize. It was a very large and strong contest, and we thank you very much for giving us the opportunity to read your work. Though your story was not unanimously selected for our prize by the whole team, our fiction editor was very impressed by your piece and would love the opportunity to publish it. Please let me know if it is still available! Thanks again for your submission. I look forward to publishing your work! Sincerely, Cosmonauts Avenue

In 2017, I had 24 rejections before I had a single acceptance, and that didn't come until July. For those of you unfamiliar with July, that's the seventh month. OUT OF TWELVE. By halfway through the year I was feeling pretty untalented. It was discouraging as all get out.

An acceptance this early in the year is a huge relief. Even if I bomb the rest of the year, I can say I have one publication I'm extremely proud of. So from the bottom of my grubby, clam shell heart: fuck yeah.

#canlit #writing #literature #writerlife #fiction #poet #canadianwriting #acceptance #submissions #seinfeld

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