I had a story rejected today. Not my story. Somebody else's. It arrived in one of my SASEs.
This rarely happens. After more than 30 years and several thousand rejections, this may be the third time I've received someone else's rejection.
It's an odd feeling of dismay to open the envelope and see the enclosed rejection, followed by a sense of relief that the rejection wasn't meant for me, following by another round of dismay as I wonder where MY manuscript went.
And there's also a feeling of Peeping Tomism because I read the rejected manuscript and study the editor's note (when there is one). What did this writer do or not do? How does my work compare? Do I agree or disagree with the editor's decision to reject? If it were my manuscript, how would I revise it?
In this case, the writer's eddress was on the manuscript. I've emailed her to let her know of her rejection, and tomorrow I'll mail the manuscript back to her so she can read the editor's note.
And I'll continue wondering where my manuscript went...