I’m a slush pile reader for a literary magazine and I keep telling myself: just keep swimming, just keep wading, just keep doggy paddling through the slush. As of today, I’ve read 75 submissions (fiction and non-fiction), and I’ve said yes to 36, maybe to 20, and no to 19. Obviously numerous people read through the slush but it’s cool to know that I’m contributing.
So far, I’ve read quite a few stories (mainly fiction) about artists, especially musicians, drug/substance abuse, war/military, dreams lost, and family conflict.
What has caught my eye: simple, poignant stories, humorous, and unique stories, identifiable characters, and satisfying endings.
What I’ve disliked: stream of conscious, abrupt endings, stories that weren’t quite ready- they needed to cook a bit longer, and stories with spelling and grammar mistakes.
If you need a laugh, check out Slush Pile Hell- http://slushpilehell.tumblr.com/