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Runnning with Scissors

PUBLISHED: October 21, 2006

Has anyone out there seen the limited release of Running with Scissors? Back in February 2005, we received a request from a production assistant working on the film adaptation of Augusten Burroughs’s memoir for a few sheets of old VQR letterhead. See, Burroughs troubled mother Deirdre (played by Annette Bening) was a would-be poet and apparently was rejected by VQR some time in the early ’70s—something they planned to dramatize in the movie. We sent off the letterhead and gave our permission to use our name, then forgot about it. But today I saw a review of the movie in the San Francisco Chronicle that reads, in part, “In early scenes … Deirdre is an Auntie Mame to her adoring child, who listens to her emote into a microphone a poem she plans to submit to the New Yorker. Augusten assures her that the magazine will publish it – even though she’s already been rejected by Virginia Quarterly.” So does anyone know? Is the rejection dramatized? I’m trying to imagine watching an Oscar-nominated actress portraying the author reaction of a rejected author. I’m guessing she doesn’t take it as well as David Keeling. (By the way, David and all submitters, we apologize for taking so long to respond. We’ve been buried in submissions ever since our National Magazine Award nominations in March. I’m pleased to report that we’ve hired additional readers, we’re enlisting new interns, and we’ve just started using a spiffy new submission database that we hope will help us streamline our process.)

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