Me & McSweeney’s Down by the Schoolyard

On 9/15/19, the following was submitted to the acclaimed literary humor site, McSweeney’s Internet Tendency. On 9/20/19, a gracious and empathetic rejection email (personally written / non-boilerplate) was sent back in response, providing even further evidence why McSweeney’s is fucking awesome.

Me & A McSWEENEY’s Rejection Letter: Collision Course

Collision course?! Why a collision course? Remember what that old timey goth boi said that one time about something something not killing you making you substantially more brolic? That’s why. (Friedrich Nietzsche, paraphrased)

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BASKETBALL ANALOGY: You can’t build a proper house without bricks. Architecturally speaking, flawless nothing-but-net swishes do not a sturdy foundation make.

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Classy addition to the Twitter bio. Worded right, it can make me seem both chill with adversity, modest enough not to flaunt my creative prowess up in your grillers too much and, if I do say so myself, a pretty cool hang.

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WIFE: “You’re so talented. I just wish you applied yourself more. This writing thing doesn’t have to be just a hobby.”

ALSO WIFE: “Are you seriously fucking napping again?! You really have to get a hobby.”

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I don’t know how you all do it. All those push notifications popping up on your phones. Blah blah liked this, blah blah retweeted that. I’m perfectly fine with my 132 followers, thank you very much.

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Makes for interesting podcast content (or so I’m told).

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POP CULTURE ANALOGY: I’m not blind to my own limitations. I know I’ll never be great so I’m perfectly fine with settling on at one point being in the proximity of greatness. I’ll gladly be the junior linebacker from Andrew Johnson High and you (McSWEENEY’S rejection letter) can be Polk High phenom Al Bundy trucking through my body on the way to scoring four touchdowns in one game, the 1966 city championship game no less. Even being on the bottom corner of the poster still means you’re on the poster is what I’ll be telling my grandkids, I don’t know about you.

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I’ve been in the market for a new lock screen pic for a while now. That one screenshot of my kids is sooo 2016.

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Aside from being humbling, rejection is amazingly motivating hate fuel but I definitely cannot afford to be verbally (or otherwise) dom’d in any sort of consistent basis considering my current monthly take home income. Ironic because if I was a working writer I’m sure I could manage to set a little bit aside for that specifically. Isn’t it considered a tax write off for creative professionals?

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A push is a push is a push no matter where you get it, how it feels or who gives it to you. If Ryan from Ryan’s Toy Review taught me anything is that we all can’t have an overbearing tiger mom will us (through sheer grit, determination and a cracked copy of Final Cut) a career in online influencing. Sometimes you’ve gotta be the first one to push (nay, smash!) your own subscribe button, fam. Then the rest will follow (comment, like and subscribe). 


Photo by Jericho Vilar

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