Anyone who is involved in the arts will be more than familiar with the standard, form rejection letters that are sent out once the juries have made their decisions and awarded the money, or offered a slot to someone in a fest, etc. I think there is a prerequisite for anyone in this industry to have a pretty thick hide, because rejection is so common that it’s practically expected. That said, I find the wording on these letters humorous, because they have to say something the recipient doesn’t want to hear, but dressed in a way that tries to make them feel as good about it as they can. Isn’t it funny how they always say they got more applications than ever before, that they were so impressed by the strength of the applications (including yours – yay!) and that because of this, the decision was ever so difficult!
Just once I’d like to see:
We’d love to thank you for your application to Big Thing, but really, your submission was an abysmal disappointment. Really? You thought you had a chance with that drivel? Your piece fails on every level: it is an affront to good taste, an act of treachery against Art itself.
At any rate, we’ve come to our decision. It really came down to one barely passable submission which did not make the jury vomit in disgust, but even then it was close. It appears our efforts to market this opportunity fell short, because hardly anyone applied and the ones who did were truly just the worst, bottom-feeding, talentless group of hacks we’ve ever had to displeasure of reviewing. What a waste of time. In fact, the decision was so clear that we were done by the end of the first afternoon and blew the rest of the allotted time getting slobbering drunk in an effort to erase the horrible memory of having to consider the submissions.
We hope that our rejection becomes a catalyst which will culminate in a decision to quit pursuing your work in any capacity, for the love of humankind. Please stop. If you do decide to continue, we hope you fall into a state of miserable poverty so extreme it forces to pursue other avenues of expression, such as begging under an overpass while doing a sad, shuffling dance or something.
The Committee Responsible for Making Decisions