Short Story Rejection #22

24-day form rejection from Uncanny for “Diver:”

Dear Allison,

Thank you for submitting “Diver” to Uncanny Magazine for consideration. Unfortunately, we’re going to pass on this one. It’s not what we’re looking for right now.

We look forward to reading further submissions from you.

The Uncanny Magazine Editors
Jaime O. Mayer
Submissions Editor
Uncanny Magazine”

Ehh not much to read into here. I’m just glad that, like with Fireside, I was able to submit to Uncanny after trimming down my story. I hadn’t been able to submit for their last period because I was over the word limit. I thought “Diver” would have been a good fit for this magazine, but I guess not.


Short Story Rejection #21

After waiting for 70 days with bated breath, a rejection from Fireside came for me at the end of June:

“Dear Allison,

Thank you for sending us “Malebolge”. Your story reached the highest level of consideration, but we’ve decided not to accept it. We’d love to see more stories from you in the future.

Thanks again. Best of luck with this.

Fireside Fiction Company ”

Not exactly what I had in mind to end the month. I know we writers flounder in the sea of rejection all the time, and all you can do is suck it up and keep going…but not gonna lie, this one hit pretty hard. I had my hopes up, a side effect of the long wait. “Malebolge” is an Own Voices story, so it couldn’t help feeling personal. What takes the sting out of this a bit was that I didn’t do too shabby for a 1st time submitter to Fireside, I suppose. Landing a pro sale from Fireside would have been a really awesome milestone, though at least I fulfilled my goal of getting a story within their 4k word limit: a big challenge for me, considering most of my work runs over that. Can’t mix up my goals and milestones! I’m grateful for my friends and followers on Twitter for supporting me and soothing my bruised feels after this news.

I keep getting these second round/close call rejections, those “we really like this because of x, but…” and I’m trying to figure out just what is that push to get me from a no to a yes.

I won’t give up on this story; I’m quite proud of it and though I haven’t written original stories for that long, I feel that this is my best to date. I’m excited to see what other stories I can come up with, hopefully ones I’d feel good about like with “Malebolge.”

Short Story Acceptance #9

I will be making another appearance in Wolf Warriors IV: the latest volume in a series of wolf-themed charity anthologies. For this year’s theme (wolves of light and shadow), I contributed one short story “The Same Within” and a loosely related illustration titled “Black Wolf, White Bone”, both accepted.

Here’s a preview of my art:

Black Wolf White Bone (2)

Short Story Rejection #20

57-day personal rejection from Lackington’s for “Malebolge:”

“Hi Allison
Thanks for sending this story in, which we enjoyed reading. We love the concept of whispering micro-organisms, and the lab culture you portray, very much here. However, with regret, we must pass on your tale as our Table of Contents takes shape. We wish you the best of luck placing it elsewhere.
Warm regards,
Ranylt Richildis

Lackington’s Magazine”

Remixt Publication: Behind the Scenes

Pencil drawing of Lac Long Quan and Au Co I did years ago in high school

“Tucked In the Folds of Our Eyes” is my attempt at combining the diaspora narrative and Vietnam’s creation myth at under 500 words. It’s a story that went through a very interesting editing process. The first flash story I’ve attempted and finished, it’s now published in Volume 2 of Remixt Magazine: an experimental project in which multiple guest editors curate the same submission pool.

From Remixt’s site: “This is an experiment to show how different editors have different tastes and ideas. Some choices will likely overlap, but some won’t, and the reasoning behind the choices may vary. People often ask how editors think. This is an exploration of the the rich array of ways to answer that!”

Three editors were interested in publishing my story. According to Julia Rios, the overall manager of Remixt, that’s a record number of editors accepting a story to feature in their issues. In the past, up to two editors were interested in an accepted piece. Most of the time it’s just one editor. Overlap turned out to be rare, according to Volume 1 results. With each editor overseeing their own issue, that meant my story would appear in three issues. No, it’s not the exact same story copied and pasted across. Each issue contains a different form of the story! More on that below.

Read more

Short Story Acceptance #8

“Tucked In the Folds of Our Eyes,” the first flash story I’ve attempted and finished, got a surprise acceptance at Remixt Magazine: an experimental project in which multiple guest editors curate the same submission pool to gauge their tastes and test for possibilities of publication overlap. 3 editors were interested in publishing my story. According to Julia Rios, the overall manager of Remixt, that’s a record number of editors liking a story. In the past, up to 2 editors were interested in a piece. Most of the time it’s just 1 editor. Overlap was rare. Contributors get paid a fixed amount for each editor who likes a story. Honestly (with a twinge of shame), considering that I rushed to finish the story in time for the deadline, I didn’t expect to make it in, let alone have multiple editors pick it.

“Tucked In the Folds of Our Eyes” combines the diaspora narrative, Vietnam’s creation myth (dragon+fairy=Vietnamese people), and jabs at the perpetuation of Eurocentric standards of beauty. It’s a very personal piece close to my heart, almost biographical if I removed the fantasy elements. Despite minor edits needed to tweak it, I suppose this is what helped: write from the bottom of your heart; tell a story honestly and sincerely. I’m delighted to have my first flash piece included in Remixt.

Release of Werewolves Versus Fascism


Werewolves are out of the bag! As the title implies, this issue tackles the resistance/anti-fascist theme. Stories, poems, comics, and art abound, as 31 contributors have made their mark in this special issue. My story “Red Beret” is featured here. WVF is available for $1 minimum, online only, and all profits go towards the Southern Poverty Law Center. According the editor, sales are doing really well!