So, going through some rejection slips, I noticed one where I sent in a story on impulse. I didn't read the magazine first. Shame on me, I know. But it turns out I should have read it for more than just to "get a feel for it".
I went and read a couple shorts on there. The first one I clicked on... well, it was sci-fi. But it was heavy handed, and I just could not get into it. No problem there, right? Just not what I like to read.
So I go to another one. The title was something about avocados. Written by some woman, forget the author's name. And I almost feel bad about trashing another writer's works, especially one who is, like me, submitting to short story magazines and online publications.
But holy shit. Let me give you a brief rundown. It's told in a first person narrative. It's about a woman (possibly the author) in a grocery store, looking through the avocados on display. And hey, look who strikes up a conversation with her, but actor and director Billy Bob Thorton.
I shit you not.
The story goes on to where her and Billy Bob throw a couple avocados at each other, and end up spilling to the ground like a bad '80s movie. You know, that moment where things get all serious and the two leads kiss. Well, she didn't kiss ol' Billy Bob. Instead she reaches out and caresses his face and tells him he's beautiful.
That's pretty much the whole thing, right there, minus the descriptive parts and the dialogue. I read that, immediately closed the window, and wrote on my submission-tracking Excel sheet: "Do not submit".
So this is possibly the one post you'll ever read where I celebrate the fact that I received a rejection notice. I consider it a victory, perhaps not by my own doing, but a victory nonetheless. Rejoice!