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On Receiving a Rejection Slip from My Publisher

Updated on February 20, 2014

Dear Sir, I feel I must request

That you should change your mind,

Concerning my poetic works,

If you should be so kind.

I offered you some poems, Sir;

In fact I tendered one,

And only asked a hundred pounds

(In Cockney slang, a ton).

Can there be a worse example of a miserly person than Scrooge McDuck. The beast who is more interested in Money than my Precious Writing.

Yet you refused to pay as much

Maintaining it’s too dear;

And so I’ve put my argument

(Or explanation) here.

My five versed poem, as you’ll see,

Is worth this asked for price,

Fives times eight-and-twenty syllables

Gives one-forty. That’s precise.


Divide the hundred pounds by that

And you’ll soon see the sense;

Each syllable’s a bargain, Sir;

Just over seventy pence.


Well, just in case you need to check

And if you calculate:

The actual cost in pounds becomes

·71428

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    • profile image

      Sunnie Day 6 years ago

      Hello Ian,

      Very clever! I would say your work is priceless ;)

      Thank you for an enjoyable poem and very witty..

      Sunnie

      PS.Thank you for that link..added it and loved it!

    • Twilight Lawns profile image
      Author

      Twilight Lawns 6 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K.

      It's one of my favourite arias from the Messiah. As soon as I started reading your hub I was singing it in my mind, and it fits in so well.

      Thanks for being my first reader, Sunnie. Glad you liked it.

      I could have tweaked it so easily to make it American.

      "Divide the hundred bucks by that

      And you’ll soon see the sense;

      Each syllable’s a bargain, Sir;

      Just over seventy cents.

      Well, just in case you need to check

      And if you calculate:

      The actual cost in dollars is:

      ·71428"

    • neeleshkulkarni profile image

      neeleshkulkarni 6 years ago from new delhi

      the poem you have sent

      i have just now got

      and would love to pay

      the price you have sought.

      the quality of the poem

      if i may be so bold

      is actually worth

      its weight in gold.

      for the rate you ask.

      my whole office cries

      you are giving it away

      at a throwaway price.

      i hate to ask this

      as am not brash

      but it so happens i am

      currently out of cash.

      i'll publish your poem

      but to cover the expence

      please send me a cheque

      for a few pounds and a few pence.

    • Twilight Lawns profile image
      Author

      Twilight Lawns 6 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K.

      Brilliant, Neelesh. I loved your reply. Thank you. I'm still smiling. Very clever man.

    • mckbirdbks profile image

      mckbirdbks 6 years ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas

      this is clever, times two

    • Twilight Lawns profile image
      Author

      Twilight Lawns 6 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K.

      Thank you for your kind comment. Please come and visit more often. Those are the words I love to hear.

    • profile image

      Sunnie Day 6 years ago

      Ian, I am so glad you did not change the wording to American..lol Bucks and Cash just doesn't ring like Pence and pounds..:) I always try to hear your accent in your poems which I bet is just wonderful. I love the English accent.

      Sunnie

    • Pamela N Red profile image

      Pamela N Red 6 years ago from Oklahoma

      Keep at it, my friend, even the best have been rejected many times.

    • AngRose profile image

      AngRose 6 years ago

      I have to agree, clever fits perfectly! Voted up and loved it. :)

    • attemptedhumour profile image

      attemptedhumour 6 years ago from Australia

      Rhyming is difficult enough without adding to the equation, as in this clever manner. I'm sure the publisher had a bargain without realising his investment. Cheers Ian.

    • Mark Ewbie profile image

      Mark Ewbie 6 years ago from Euroland

      I don't normally read poetry - but glad I checked this one out Twilight.

    • steve of ian fame profile image

      steve of ian fame 6 years ago from Essex

      Did my acceptance from my publisher and then his subsequent refusal on cost inspire this poem Ian.

    • Twilight Lawns profile image
      Author

      Twilight Lawns 6 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K.

      pamela, this was written for my chum "steve of ian fame" who has commented below. I would never submit a poem or a story to a publisher, because if I did and they rejected it, I would have had to murder them, or burn down their offices, or kick their cat... and my time is too taken up with other things.

    • Twilight Lawns profile image
      Author

      Twilight Lawns 6 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K.

      Angie, thank you for the "voted up", my friend. I really appreciate your constant support.

      Big hug,

      Ian

    • Twilight Lawns profile image
      Author

      Twilight Lawns 6 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K.

      Sunnie, it sounds arrogant, but although I am not English, I am, as they say, "more English than the English". My accent is (Blush!) rather Mmmm... Good!!!

    • Twilight Lawns profile image
      Author

      Twilight Lawns 6 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K.

      Hi, Keith. The original poem, and rejection slip, were not mine, but those of a very new hubber, "steve of ian fame" who has commented below. My poems have never found themselves on the inside of a publisher's mail box.

      Thanks for your great comments, and your support.

      Ian

    • Twilight Lawns profile image
      Author

      Twilight Lawns 6 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K.

      Hi, Mark. I'm so glad you took the time to come down from your ivory tower of witty and clever writing (I was going to say, "Scribbling") and visited.

      Gosh! (says he, in awe) you are getting some wonderful responses to your Winnie-ther-Pooh hub.

      http://hubpages.com/hub/Winnie-the-Pooh-and-the-Im...

    • Twilight Lawns profile image
      Author

      Twilight Lawns 6 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K.

      Hi steve of ian fame. Yes that scurrilous missive from that unscrupulous publisher encouraged me to write the above timeless poetry.

      Ah! Sweet water from a poisoned well.

      "All's Well That Ends Well", as Charles Shakespeare would have said... (or did he?)

    • WillStarr profile image

      WillStarr 6 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona

      Clever stuff!

    • Nellieanna profile image

      Nellieanna Hay 6 years ago from TEXAS

      I L-O-V-E it!! It is definitely worth every pound, pence or ton! You are soooo witty! Hugs.

    • Twilight Lawns profile image
      Author

      Twilight Lawns 6 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K.

      Thanks, Will, for dropping by, and your in-depth comment.

    • Twilight Lawns profile image
      Author

      Twilight Lawns 6 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K.

      Hello, nellieanna, Thanks for the comment. I have just come back from the Common, from an afternoon of reading. Believe it or not, there wasn't a grey squirrel in sight. Eventually I saw one, and asked him why, and he replied."There's a Right Royal Wedding coming up, and we're celebrating it at a huge party in Nellieanna's attic. By invitation only".

    • Nellieanna profile image

      Nellieanna Hay 6 years ago from TEXAS

      Oh no. The landlady is always the last to know!! EEEEEEEK! (Maybe the wedding will be called off? - - - )

    • Twilight Lawns profile image
      Author

      Twilight Lawns 6 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K.

      I'll ask Wills and Kate, butWills's granny is a tough old bird, and she thinks she's something special.

      I don't know who she thinks she, is; someone important or something!

      Hugs,

      Ian

    • kallini2010 profile image

      kallini2010 6 years ago from Toronto, Canada

      Well, I can see there a good omen - 42. So, Ian I should ask you (since you already have the experience) to be my literary agent - this Damsel in Distress needs money.

      You are good with numbers, more polite and subtle than I(whereas I am ready to engage heavy artillery), you can write poems, prose, poetic prose, prosaic poetry..., comic tragedy, tragic comedy.

      ????

    • Twilight Lawns profile image
      Author

      Twilight Lawns 6 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K.

      I need money, a downstairs lavatory, a literary agent. a gardener, some ideas for writing stories (No I don't. I have the ideas, but I am such a S - L - O - W writer.

    • kallini2010 profile image

      kallini2010 6 years ago from Toronto, Canada

      Well, Mr. S - L - O - Writer, you have 60 hubs and I just getting to 30. Speaking about numbers.

      However, the lavatory - is the hardest thing for me - I just have no idea... on lavatories - only thoughts in lavatories, mostly how to get out of them.

    • Twilight Lawns profile image
      Author

      Twilight Lawns 6 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K.

      All my 60 hubs are not new, Only about ten of those have been written recently. Some were written before you were born, my friend.

    • theseus profile image

      theseus 5 years ago from philippines

      A great read Twilight. Another clever stuff to your credit. You really have a way with words. Such a gift you have. God bless.

    • Twilight Lawns profile image
      Author

      Twilight Lawns 5 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K.

      Without sounding arrogant, theseus, it is a gift, and I feel strongly that if I were not to use it, I would have it removed. Think of the parable of the talents, as told by Jesus Christ. Those men who didn't use their talents found the Master got really angry with them.

      Sorry to preach!

      Thanks for coming and reading, I love it when I have your comments. You have been a support for me for almost as long as I have been on hub pages.

      God bless you, too.

    • H P Roychoudhury profile image

      H P Roychoudhury 5 years ago from Guwahati, India

      I will just say priceless wonderful poetic expression.

    • Twilight Lawns profile image
      Author

      Twilight Lawns 5 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K.

      Thank you, HP and I want you to know how much I appreciate your visits and also how much I like your hubs about India and her history.

    • nemanjaboskov profile image

      Nemanja Boškov 5 years ago from Serbia

      I must say I have never been a fan of poetry, but I read this and liked it very much. It was clever, interesting, witty, intelligent, and there is another adjective, probably my favorite, that I can add to a poem - short enough :)

      I love long prose and short poetry - the latter rarely being true...

    • Twilight Lawns profile image
      Author

      Twilight Lawns 5 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K.

      Nemanja, I am afraid that some of my poetry tends to go on and on and on and... I think you get my point.

      Be warned, beware, steer clear.

      Ha ha!

      Sometimes my stories go on and on to the point where they have several chapters... the average Hubber (and that excludes the wonderful friends of mine who put up with my writing) tend to have the attention span of a couple of retarded pigeons, and can only manage a maximum of a thousand words.

      But you are welcome to come any time... you know that.

      Welcome, Nemanja... your desire to read epics is needed.

      (As if!)

    • nemanjaboskov profile image

      Nemanja Boškov 5 years ago from Serbia

      I love reading Hubs that have a point and chapters - both of which are becoming an endangered species around here...

    • Twilight Lawns profile image
      Author

      Twilight Lawns 5 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K.

      I agree wholeheartedly. i wrote a story of eight chapters with a friend, 'Sunnie Day' (Top of this column of comments) and we loved putting it together, but it proved too daunting for some people. Luckily there are a few who will read and read and beg for more. They have moved from being hubbers to followers to friends, and I have great affection for them.

    • tillsontitan profile image

      Mary Craig 4 years ago from New York

      It seems you don't need an agent ... you've worded this so well ... no one who follows through it ....certainly can tell!

      Great job on an intriguing subject. Really, humorous and well written. Voted up, funny, and SHARED.

    • rahul0324 profile image

      Jessee R 4 years ago from Gurgaon, India

      Lovely poem... chuckles all over... The Sarcasm and polite anger at the rejection

      Beautiful and funny!!

    • Twilight Lawns profile image
      Author

      Twilight Lawns 4 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K.

      Tillsontitan, thank you so much for dropping in. You have made a rotten day so much more bearable.

      I really appreciate the comments and SHARED.

      Thanks again.

    • ThoughtSandwiches profile image

      ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada

      Ian,

      I love when I can read something that involves mathematics and I understand it's essential nature! You have given me that thrill this evening. Indeed, a bargain for your publisher. So...what exactly is a pound? lol.

      Thomas

      PS...sharing this all over.

    • prettynutjob30 profile image

      Mary 4 years ago from From the land of Chocolate Chips,and all other things sweet.

      Great catchy hub voted up and awesome.

    • Twilight Lawns profile image
      Author

      Twilight Lawns 4 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K.

      Thanks, Thomas.

      My greatest pleasure from this was how beautifully the rhythm of the last two lines touches my heart.

      "The actual cost in pounds becomes

      ·71428"

      George Bernard Shakespeare, eat your heart out!

    • Twilight Lawns profile image
      Author

      Twilight Lawns 4 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K.

      prettynutjob, thank you for the visit.

      I hope you realise how deeply serious and dear to my heart this is...

      Oh well.

      We can't all be Poets Laureate

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