Wednesday, February 6, 2008

I hate rejection letters

I hate rejection. I received two rejection letters this week. I hate it. It spoiled my entire day. What do those fools know, anyway. Here I poured my heart and soul into those pieces and they have the audacity to reject them? How dare they?

Okay, I tell myself. Get a grip. Its all part of the writing process.

No, I reply – I will not get a grip! My baby! My baby was rejected! I birthed that idea. I gave it life. I brought it into the world. And those lame-brain editors rejected it! How dare they!

Calm down.


Take a deep breath.


You are not the first or last writer to get rejected. Surely you remember the 100 rejection letters you got before your first book was sold? That didn’t stop you then. Why should it bother you now?

Okay, okay, I remember those 100 rejections – but I have more experience now. Don’t those editors know that? Don’t they know my qualifications, my experience? Don’t they know that I agonized over every word?

No, they don’t. They’re in it for the business. It wasn’t what they wanted. That's it, nothing personal.

I still hate those letters.

Maybe there's a bright side. Remember that most of the rejection letters you’ve received have been photocopies of photocopies of rejection letters – enough to wallpaper your entire house? This time you got a personal letter and an email – both of the editors took enough to say some good things – they took the time to let you know that the pieces just didn’t fit what they wanted.

Okay, okay – maybe I sent them to the wrong places. Maybe those particular editors aren’t complete idiots. But I still feel bad.

Take a few days to mull it over. It’s part of the writer’s life. Try to learn something from the experience. Is there some way to target the pieces to a publisher who would be more likely to accept them? Were the concerns they mentioned in the rejection letters real? Should the pieces be changed?

Stop. I don’t want to think about that now.

Okay, go on to other projects for a while. Come back to these in a few days – maybe a week – but don’t wait too long. Keep your proposals in the mail – always keep your proposals in the mail. They will never be sold sitting on your desk.

Maybe I’m feeling a little better. Sometimes I just have to vent.

I hate rejection letters.

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