monkey mind’s revenge?
You’ve heard of “Montezuma’s revenge,” right? If not, here’s the nice version: your digestive tract expresses its dissatisfaction with something you’ve ingested. After I gave monkey mind* the smack-down this morning, he decided to try and get his revenge. He had high hopes for dramatics.
He pulled strings at a publication I’ve been drooling over and asked the editors there to deliver me bad news today. Today. The same day I told him to take a hike. It’s no coincidence. He thinks bad news from editors at a publication where I believe my work would fit fabulously would give him his power back.
Admittedly, I listened to him a bit. I sent an email to a friend whining: “I’m _______ magazine material, right?” I mean, the publication seems like a great place for my poetry, one of the more clear-cut places I think it belongs. Maybe the pieces need some work. Maybe the editors didn’t connect with the pieces. Maybe I have no idea where my work belongs. But that’s as far as it went. No tantrums. No wonderings about if I’m a poet at all. No rash decisions to hang up the gloves. I don’t think monkey mind got the rise out of it he’d expected.
Here’s the standard rejection language from the editors: “Thank you very much for submitting these pieces to ________. Unfortunately, we have decided not to accept them for publication. We wish you the best of luck placing these ones elsewhere.” Bah. And damn. And onward. I know all three pieces will eventually be published.
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*Monkey mind is what Natalie Goldberg calls our inner critic, the thing that tries to keep us from writing.