Our Message to You About Rejections


As we begin to send out responses to the over 300 authors who’ve submitted to the Inked in Gray survival-themed anthology and contest, we are overwhelmed with gratitude at how many individuals submitted. And we are impressed with the stories we’ve read alongside Val, our judge, who will be making the final decision as to the winner of the $75 contest prize.

Please know that we read every single email. And while we’d love to respond to everyone personally, we are a small press. We simply don’t have the bandwidth to provide feedback to everyone as we’d like to do.

We sincerely thank everyone for believing in us and submitting to our anthology. It takes courage and bravery to put your work out into the world, and we do not take that lightly. Obviously, we could not pick everyone, and even still, there were a lot of difficult choices made in regards to which stories would be a part of our anthology.

If you are reading this and your story was rejected by Inked, or from any press, I wanted to provide you with some reasons as to why this may have occurred.

Rejections are not a reflection of the author. It doesn’t mean you aren’t a talented writer. It could mean that your story wasn’t a good fit thematically, or that it tried to address themes other than survival. There may have been multiple stories with your genre, in which case, we had to decide which story was the best representative for said genre. It may have been something as simple as your story needing a little more time in the oven before it’s ready to be consumed by eager readers. Whatever the reason, it does not mean you aren’t worthy of success, or any less of a writer.

Making these decisions weighed heavily on our hearts. Inked wants to make everyone’s dreams come true. We anguished and re-read submissions. Then reread them again! Be proud of your work. Reward yourself for putting a part of your soul onto the page, then sending it to grumpy editors *cough* Sam and Crowe *cough* who tore their hair out deciding which stories would make it into the anthology, while Kota whined about wanting to publish them all.

Keep writing. Keep querying. And remember: just because we could not pick your story does not mean we didn’t love it. Thank you for sharing a piece of your soul with us.

We hope you continue to write and seek out opportunities for publication and to improve your craft. If you are looking for an amazing writing community with FREE resources for both traditional and indie arenas, we highly recommend the WriteHive discord community. Nowhere else can you have a conversation with industry professionals, share your work, and find resources all in one place.

Because of the high number of submissions and the quick turnaround, we were not able to craft detailed notes. If you’d like additional feedback, they will be happy to provide notes, however we cannot guarantee the turnaround time as it will depend on the number of requests we receive. If you would like Crowe to review and provide comments, please respond to our email, but change the email subject line to RE: Feedback Request – Crowe.

So again, thank you for submitting your work to us at Inked. We hope to see your work again. 


The Inked Team

Dakota Rayne
Author: Dakota Rayne

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