There is a backstory to this story. Shimmer is, sadly, one of many, respected professional speculative short fiction markets that I have targeted aggressively without result. I have submitted to Shimmer nearly every story that I have written in the past two years--over thirty in all. I received mostly generic rejections, but occasionally some personal ones. Most of the personals indicated that while my stories were otherwise good, they were not "shimmery." Some even suggested in a snarky tone that I "read the magazine" in order to find out the kinds of stories Shimmer publishes. Good advice. I took it. I still have no idea what "shimmery" means.
5% of my poetry submissions have resulted in sales, but only a dismal 0.5% of my short story submissions have. I usually receive a rejection every day--often more than one. "All That Shimmers" was composed in part as a response to the frustration of having stories that I know are well-written be constantly shot down. And Shimmer has shot down enough of my stories for a novel-length collection.
"All That Shimmers" takes the form of a satiric fairy tale. I had great fun packing as many "sh" sounds into it as possible. This playful consonance really makes the story shimmer. I used other poetic devices to advantage as well. Hopefully, the slush readers at Shimmer will have as much fun reading it as I had writing it.
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