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Rejections

Fence Poetry Collection Rejection

Jac Jemc

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I have a book of poetry. It is homeless. It has been homeless for years. I have submitted it many times. I keep swapping poems in and out of it every year or so. I like these poems. The book is called, "My Neighbor is Dead." I think I've submitted it to the Fence open reading periods twice now, thinking maybe different judges would feel differently about it, but I just received another rejection from them. Someday this funny little book will find the right home.

I have often said finding a home for my poetry has been way harder than finding a home for my fiction. It is a difference of experience I think about regularly. I am inclined to think that my poetry is weaker than my fiction for this reason, but I re-read my poems and I still really like them. They are dark and fragmented. I believe I can only say this because I've experienced luck in some realm of my writing, but it's sort of nice that this collection just won't land. Admittedly, I'm picky about where I want it to land, but I don't feel any real urgency about it. Perhaps it's also nice to think that I just have this body of work waiting to be put into the world. Maybe that's a comfort? I think that might be part of it, too.