It’s always encouraging for a writer to get a note of praise from someone in the publishing industry. Even better a blurb, a review, a nod! But it is very hard to enjoy the glow of a good response when it is tainted with the reader’s notes of exceptions. For example: I will never be able to let go the time I was rejected from getting a personal essay published in a fine literary journal. The rejection letter was immediately thrilling, as it did not arrive as a form letter, often suggesting no one actually read it. Then the editor starting with her exaltations of my authoritative voice, my lovely prose, etc., etc., but eventually got down to the nitty gritty of her cause for rejection. According to her, the dialogue, though carrying much of the story, and very funny, was unrealistic. People just do not speak to each other that way, she said. She was so sure of herself it was as though she was calling me a liar, as this was a work of non-fiction! I wanted to call her and tell her, Hey Missy, this is what we actually said! People in my family do say these things to each other! But alas, we cannot do that, lest we burn an important bridge. And so, you take the good with the infuriating, and hope the next editor knows a family just like yours.