As a writer of tasteless short fiction, I’m used to rejection letters. Most of my magazine submissions are quickly returned with a brief “No thank you” or a longer “This isn’t what we’re looking for, sorry.” If I’m lucky, I receive a personalized postscript with constructive feedback, such as “Mr. Henne, this is an Applebee’s; please stop submitting your short fiction to this mailing address.”
I never take rejection personally. Over the years I’ve developed quite the thick skin. Go ahead — touch my hand. Cracked and leathery, right? Like a old catcher’s mitt that hasn’t trimmed its nails.
I rarely react to rejection. With one exception: I cannot stand by as my material is openly ridiculed.
Now, I’m of the mind that all art is relevant. Whether it be a poop-smeared painting or a tale about simple townsfolk wearing alien super suits, a piece of art is the cherished product of a real person — a person with actual feelings who deserves to be treated with respect. If I don’t like somebody’s work, that’s perfectly fine, but that doesn’t give me permission to mock it.
Which us brings us to the savages at Cat Fancy.
I don’t typically take to the blog to shake my fist at a publication. But I’ve got no other course of action here.
Over the last few years, the managing editors of Cat Fancy magazine have treated myself and my art like garbage. My submissions have routinely been met with mean-spirited rancor and wholesale rejection.
It’s time to return the favor.
Below, I’ve reproduced a scathing response I sent to the magazine earlier today. I hope my readers will think twice before shelling out their hard-earned money on Cat Fancy, with its nose-in-the-air editorial staff lounging atop their ivory scratching post.