No acceptances of rejections yet this year, but I still have 3-4 weeks on the four pending before their self-stated SLAs are up (I'm not counting Hotel Guignol's screenplay sub...at the time they were getting 300 per day--yes, day).
I just got the latest issue of Cemetary Dance, and there was an interview in there with Brian Keene. The interviewer asked him if he considered himself a sell-out because WalMart asked Random House to ask Keene (insofar as WalMart "asks" a potential supplier to do anything...they say sign here or find another channel to sell your crap in) to make a major change to his story because it might be offensive--I haven't read the book (Terminal), but apparently there is a child character who is the second coming of Christ, and the MC caused his death. Walmart didn't like it--so Keene changed it.
My wife said that's ludicrous, you wouldn't do that...would you? And I hesitated. I had to think about that, and I still haven't decided. Given my station and goals, I would have to consider it long and hard, but my gut tells me that I would probably toe the line on that. Keene's defense was that mainstream fiction is not art--it's entertainment, and must meet the demands of the supply chain. But, as the title of this post suggests: how great would it be to even to have the chance to answer that question?
Highly speculative (but hey, that's what we do!), but, what would you do in Keene's situation? If you had a rock that said "my writing is..." and two buckets, one said "demand-driven entertainment", the other "my artistic expression", which bucket would you toss into?