“A Formal Feeling Comes”: It All Depends on the Editor

Click on the cover to read “A Formal Feeling Comes”; it begins on page 16.

Publication in Remington Review

I am pleased to share that my short story, “A Formal Feeling Comes,” has been published in the Fall 2021 issue of Remington Review.

This is the first time a story of mine that was previously published has been published a second time. A big shout-out to Remington Review for their willingness to accept reprints! Click on the cover to read the story; it begins on page 16.

Publication in Mystic Review Review

The story was first published in the Spring/Summer 2001 issue of Mystic River Review, a literary magazine that is now defunct. The reason I submitted the story to be published a second time is that the editor of Mystic Review Review changed both the title and the ending. In addition, the story was incorrectly listed in the magazine as an essay. Back in 2001, I had only a small handful of publishing credits. I agreed to the changes so that the editor would publish the story. Would I agree to those fundamental changes to a story now to get a publishing credit? No, I wouldn’t.

Editor’s ending to “Sea Glass”

Rejection by Coastal Shelf

In another bit of editorial weirdness, when Coastal Shelf rejected “A Formal Feeling Comes,” the feedback I received was that there wasn’t enough emotion in it–even though It’s a story about three generations of women who are emotionally repressed!

Coast Shelf Rejection

Two Children Who Were Not Emotionally Repressed

131 thoughts on ““A Formal Feeling Comes”: It All Depends on the Editor

  1. Liz, congratulations on having the story published – twice! Yes, one learns a lot with experience and time but credit to you and your writing that it’s been accepted not once, but twice. The reason for the other rejection beggars belief – judges can be fickle!

    Liked by 2 people

      1. Liz, I have finally had a chance to savour both the main story and also read the first printed ending. The writing is extraordinary; exquisite detail, incredible capture of three generations of women with so much unspoken emotions my heart goes out to all. I can see how you would now not be happy with the Mystic River Review ending as with a sudden twist it reverses everything previously conveyed in the story. The original is perfect, but heart-breaking. Xx

        Liked by 2 people

  2. Thanks so much for sharing your publishing journey with this story, Liz. It just goes to show that there’s no definitive way to approach the industry, as well as the value of experience. This is a beautiful story and emotional! in a very poignant way. Relationships are complicated, and therein lie the stories that grip our hearts. Many congrats.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I so loved reading your beautiful story!!! Reading it now at Thanksgiving time, it really shines like a bright copper penny. It highlights the intricate and deeply profound ways in which our beloveds touch our hearts. We carry the memories with us always, at once both ‘tucked away’, but there at a moments notice. The holidays remind us of all our blessings…and the bittersweet nostalgia of all we have known and experienced. It all comes together like a woven tapestry of love. Thank you for this marvelous story, a tapestry full of many colors, some muted, some brilliant, all threaded together with care, wonder, and love!!!

    Liked by 2 people

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