Monday, August 01, 2005

Eating crow

A fellow named Laird Barron found one of my older and snarkier posts (Wonkaphilic Fan Fic, David Gerrold Kills Pound Puppies, &c., from May 20) and left this comment. The first bit is a quote from my blog, the second is his response. "You might even say F&SF is the Rabbit Test of the spec fiction world, but of course you wouldn't say it if you still harbored any hope of ever being published by F&SF, would you?" Probably not. However, I think Gordon has enough class to separate the work from the author. Pity. Sincerely, Laird I said this was one of my snarkier posts. Snarky may be too kind. My tone was petulant and whining, and not particularly funny, so I can't even use the excuse, "It's only humor!" In ragging on the Rabbit Tests of the world, I contributed to the problem. In my defense, I really do find Fantasy & Science Fiction to be a frustrating magazine, and it's not just because they won't give me the time of day as a writer. I could have been a lot less pissy in expressing my opinion, however. But let's get back to Mr. Barron. It's hard not to like this guy, or at least respect him. He zinged me with one word: Pity. And zinged me good. I thought about that all night. I googled him, and have even more respect for the man. He has been published in Fantasy & Science Fiction, Sci Fiction, and other places. His story for Sci Fiction, Bulldozer, looks great, at least from the first few hundred words I've read thus far. So, Mr. Barron, if you're out there: yeah, I can take a hint. Consider me bitch-slapped. And good luck with your novel. D.


Anonymous PBW said...

Don't feel like you're the only one. F&SF rejected me about 30 times before I gave up submitting.

I later expanded four of those rejected stories into novels, and sold them all to major publishers for a lot more money than Van Gelder would have paid.

8/01/2005 12:41:00 PM  
Anonymous Laird Barron said...


Classy response. Thanks for that. Your point re: frustration is taken.

Call me Laird, please.

Best wishes,


8/01/2005 01:54:00 PM  
Blogger Douglas Hoffman said...

Hi PBW: You have greater sticktoitiveness than me. I think I gave up after a dozen. I think I'll stick to some of the edgier small presses with my submissions.

Hi Laird: thanks for stopping by. Seemed like the only right thing to do.

But the question is: is this a bad enough faux pas to get me on PBW's Writers Behaving Badly list?

8/01/2005 05:20:00 PM  
Anonymous PBW said...

Class all around this blog today. Bravo, gentlemen.

Doug, I have personally committed countless acts of rejection rage -- my little glass mansion would surely shatter if I made them an ABB list qualifier.

8/01/2005 06:46:00 PM  

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