In the Spirit of Poetry Has Value | July 2016 Report

July was pretty much a bust that has me wondering whether I should be writing at all. A friend says the summer’s lack of structure is not helping and that I’ll feel more like myself once the semester starts. We’ll see.

Here are my July statistics:

Poetry: Sent to six journals (Jewish Literary Journal, Rose Red Review, Rust + Moth, Whale Road Review, Springhouse, Foundry), no acceptances, seven rejections (Rust + Moth, Modern Poetry Quarterly Review, Arroyo Literary Review, Ploughshares, Foundry, Jewish Literary Journal, Hunger Mountain). 

Short fiction: Entered an unpublished story into a contest.

Creative nonfiction: I queried a publisher about my genealogical memoir, We Are Rock Candy: Crystallization of a Jewish Family. The piece published in May by Jewish Literary Journal, “The Hands That Bind Us,” is a chapter from the manuscript. The publisher asked for my proposal and sample chapter.

Academic journal articles: Based on my presentation at June’s Children’s Literature Association, the Journal of Literature & Art Studies has asked me to submit my paper, “Recovering Marginalized Voices of the Holocaust through Children’s Picture Books and Graphic Novels.” Because my paper, “No Stone Unturned: Newark’s Grove Street Cemetery,” has been accepted for a panel on Newark at November’s New Jersey Historical Commission Forum, I’m finessing that for submission to New Jersey Studies: An Interdisciplinary Journal. My proposals to the Mid-Atlantic Pop Culture Association and the Northeast Pop Culture Association have been accepted, and I’ll be presenting on dance marathons of the 1920s and 1930s.

Other July activities: I wrote three picture book manuscripts, all of which are out in the market. One publisher suggested a topic and I hope to work on that in August.

Acceptances vs. Rejections

Now, following the conversation started by Kim Liao and a response by Laura Waylene Walter about rejections, I’m presenting my year-to-date rejection numbers:

Poetry: 29 journals, 118 individual poems

Short stories: 8

Creative nonfiction: 4

Hooray! I’ve beat the goal of 100 rejections and the year’s not over yet! My acceptance rate for prose is much, much higher than it is for poetry. I think I have to take my poetry to a different level. I just signed up for a one-on-one, 10-week poetry class with poet Matthew Lippman, author of Salami Jew. I have a chapbook in mind.


About Barbara Krasner

History writer and award-winning author Barbara Krasner writes Jewish-themed poetry, articles, nonfiction books, and novels for children and adults.
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4 Responses to In the Spirit of Poetry Has Value | July 2016 Report

  1. Rejection simply expresses a difference in taste

  2. Sheila Baslaw says:

    I am winded and full of admiration for your writing activities for the month of July.
    You are a hurricane of ideas and writing production.
    I say hurricane because you will not be stopped and your writing talents are so diverse and seemingly unlimited.
    Good on you!!!
    Will be in touch.
    Sheila Baslaw

  3. This report suggests that July was most definitely NOT a bust! So many important developments. Mazal tov, and keep going.

    (I’ve thought, too, about keeping track of all of the rejections cumulatively. But I get stymied by the effort involved with the individual poems–I’m afraid I’d need to spend a lot of time re-visiting the withdrawals and such. But perhaps your example will compel me to forge ahead!)

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