Dear Articulate Dad,* Well, actually, I did. Last year, I presented a preliminary version of this work at the local chapter meeting.
Thank you for submitting a proposal for the meeting of the Society of Old Dinosaurs [location/date]. I regret to report that the Program Committee did not select your proposal.
The committee had the difficult task of selecting only 144 papers out of over 570 submissions. Unfortunately it could not accept all of the promising abstracts that were proposed. Both the Committee and the SOD Board have asked me to encourage you to consider presenting your work at an SOD chapter meeting* or other venues.
If you have questions about this year's deliberations, you may address them to [name], Chair of the Program Committee [email].
Executive Director, Society of Old Dinosaurs
Out of curiosity, I will write to the program chair to see if I might read redacted comments on my abstract (if such things exist). My impression is simply that old dinosaurs have no interest in my work. If they're not a proper part of my audience, perhaps I should stop trying to talk to them. I don't wish to be bitter. I just wish to understand my audience better.
This was the third abstract I'd submitted to the national conference, having not submitted for about four years. I have presented about a dozen conference papers, having organized and chaired two sessions. Do I really need the SOD to listen?