Rejection sucks, right? I know. I’ve been there (and will be there again, and again, and again…). The annoying this is that the more you submit your work, the more rejections you get back. At least until you hit that magical point of literary fame where no magazine would dare refuse your work! But then, you’d probably have an agent to shield you from any rejection you might still get.
The next time a story of yours gets rejected, try sending this as a response! It worked for Luke Skywalker when he was trying to save Han Solo from Jabba the Hutt, right? Why wouldn’t it work for you?
Greetings, Exalted Editor. Allow me to introduce myself. I am a Lowly Writer and the author of the story you rejected.
I know that you are powerful, Mighty Editor, and that your anger with my story must be equally powerful. I seek an audience with Your Greatness to bargain for my story’s life.
With your wisdom, I’m sure that we can work out an arrangement that* will be mutually beneficial and enable us to avoid any unpleasant confrontation.
As a token of my goodwill, I present to you a gift: These two slush-reading droids. Both are hardworking and will serve you well.
In all seriousness, DO NOT DO THIS. It’s fine to respond to personal rejections with a thanks, but generally speaking, there’s no need to respond at all to form rejections. Just send that story to another journal!
(I cannot take full credit for this idea. Last week, a friend shared a funny post from Tumblr featuring one user asking “ugh how do you even cover letter” and in response, Luke’s original message to Jabba from Return of the Jedi, which is actually a pretty decent cover letter.)
*Luke’s “which” in the original is grammatically incorrect, and one wouldn’t want an error in a letter to an editor. *clutches pearls*