From this article in the Guardian Books Blog comes news of a soon-to-be-published collection of rejection letters—not the kind spurned lovers used to get, but the even sadder kind that authors receive from editors. As the article points out, rejections are no fun from either end; we’ve had to write plenty of those letters ourselves, and we always hate to be the bearer of bad tidings. At the same time, we sort of wish the power involved could somehow carry over into other areas of our lives. If only we could nip real problems in the bud with the stroke of a pen…
Dear Subway Jackass,
Thank you for submitting your proposal Step Into the Subway Ahead of Me and Stop Moving Immediately for consideration. While we very much appreciate your interest in adding a particularly excruciating moment to my already painful commute, we are returning your submission, as we are not accepting unsolicited cretinism at this time.
By way of friendly critique, we do want to tell you that your submission displayed some initial promise. Your idea for an opening—i.e., stepping promptly into the train instead of standing stock still in front of me on the platform—was by no means unreasonable. Rather, it was your proposal to stop short one millimeter inside the door, despite the ample passenger room available on the interior and the obstacle this action would pose to my own entrance, that made us question the acceptability of your submission and, indeed, your functionality as a member of a species whose evolutionary success derives largely from such social skills as reciprocal courtesy and awareness of other selves.
We hope you will understand that our rejection is in no way meant to disparage you, but is simply the necessary result of our deep and abiding loathing toward you and every member of your solipsistic ilk. Meanwhile, we wish you every success in falling into an open manhole. Best of luck!