I’ve heard more than one person say that reading slush is incredibly useful for a writer. It can be a great way to see what others are writing and grow in your own writing.
But I’ve also seen more than one person comment on how horrible the slush reading experience can be. Lots of bad writing. Lots of misogynistic crap. Lots of over the top violence.
I can’t remember where I read it now, but I recently read a very disturbing story that was inspired by a conversation about what it is like to read slush. It was a play on the whole wife as harpy so she must die motif.
(It seems that appears in slush on a regular basis.)
I figured if that story was just a play on the idea, that I’d hate to read all of the stories that inspired it.
Don’t get me wrong. It was incredibly well written. But not where I like to spend my mental time.
I’m a firm believer that whatever you let into your mind leaves a residue behind. So the more crap you let in, the more crap stays behind whether you want it to or not.
And if slush is anything like what I’ve heard, that’s a lot of crap.
I ran across this blog post from Shimmer that I think sums up exactly how reading slush can feel: Concerning Slush
So, as useful as reading slush might be for my writing…I’ll pass, thanks.
(I prefer to live in a delusional world where there aren’t a bunch of people spending their time writing hateful things about other people.)
I think the story you’re thinking of is Rachel Swirsky’s “Abomination Rises on Filthy Wings” at Apex. http://www.apex-magazine.com/abomination-rises-on-filthy-wings/
Yep. That was the one. Thanks for the link!