Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Taking rejection

January 3, 2017

Dear Publisher,

I can see by your recent note in the mail that you are not interested in publishing my eight volume collection of essays. While I feel confident Clerkmanifesto: The Early Years would be a perfect fit with your publishing company, I must respect your expertise and judgement on this matter. And when you said it "does not meet our needs at this time" I felt heartened that you were leaving the door open to our working together in the future, perhaps on this very project! Times do indeed change, as I think you were suggesting. In whole I am enthusiastic about your response to my work. The simple fact that it took you eight months to respond to my query clearly indicated that this was a decision you chewed over for a good long time. How close you came to deciding to publish my work is something that I'll never know, but the way you addressed me as "Mr. Calipso", misspelling my name, suggested an extremely agitated person, wondering if he was making a horrible mistake.

But however much doubt filled you as you tremblingly dictated your form letter response to me, eight months after I contacted you, I can only stand quietly by as we both live with your fateful decision. No matter how much this decision ultimately costs us, financially and professionally, I recognize that you clearly had compelling and carefully considered reasons for making the decision you did. Perhaps a drug problem, alcohol, or a gambling addiction made you aware that you could not handle a project of this scope. Perhaps a fear of success inculcated in you by oppressive parenting caused you to blindly stamp down on the best opportunity of your career, desperately afraid that this golden opportunity will only serve to prove once again that you are "not good enough". I don't know, but I take no offense. I understand the pain and burden so many of us operate under and instead of resenting you in any way, I only hope you get the help you need before you hurt more of the people around you.

Wishing you the best of luck in this time of crisis in your life,

Your friend (I'd like to think so, if you'd only let me),

Feldenstein Calypso (note the "y")


  1. Replies
    1. I have decided to take you at your word, though, admittedly my first response was a bit of nervousness. Who is "we"? What are you watching? But I have decided you (all, as in "we") are a group of enormously important Macarthur Genius Grant agents, keeping a low profile, but wanting to signify that my time is soon coming.

      Just nod if I'm on the right track. And, thank you!


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