Because I have a book coming out in two months, my brother-in-law Jay pointed out that maybe I shouldn’t use the term “Failing Writer” anymore. He’d like me to use something like “Moderately Successful Writer” or “Printing Material Every Once In A While Writer” or “Not Making Much Money But Sometimes I Sell A Few Articles Writer.” And I understand his argument.
Except I still fail on a regular basis. In fact, I fail all the time.
For example, I just got another story rejected by The New Yorker. They wrote:
Thanks for the new PDF. We regret that we are unable to use the enclosed material. Thank you for giving us the opportunity to consider it.
Other than the use of two different font sizes in one short email, there’s nothing notable here.
They didn’t like my stuff.
They didn’t want to print it.
They used an awful, short form email to tell me “no.”
And I don’t know for sure, but I’m guessing that the editors at THE New Yorker will continue to be “unable to use” any of my enclosed materials for a long, long time. So until The New Yorker wants to publish my fiction, until they stop sending me form email rejections and start sending me love letters (or at least acquaintance letters) I’m going to go right ahead and keep failing.
Therefore, “Failing Writer.”