Blogger Template by Blogcrowds

Dealing with Rejection

Writers have to have a tough skin. Rejection happens all the time, and you just have to brush it off.

It's not easy, though. Opening the mailbox to see your own SASE (self-addressed stamped envelope) will make your heart skip a beat. Your hand will quiver as you tear open the envelope. You think, Maybe this is the one! And maybe it is. But more often than not, it's another rejection.

So how do you deal with it? Oh, I still have a hard time with it. But think of it this way: One "YES" is worth 100 "no's". The first time I received an acceptance call---YES, the editor actually called me to offer me a BOOK contract!---I was beside myself with joy. My feet didn't touch the ground for two weeks.

So here are some tips for dealing with the inevitable rejection:

1) Accept your emotions. When you're tearing yourself apart, trying to figure out how to be a real writer, remember this: You ARE a real writer. Writers are supposed to be emotional; they are supposed to be insecure; and they are supposed to question their validity. That's what makes your writing so good.

2) Count your failures. A long time ago, another writer introduced me to the power of 100 "no's". (My apologies to unknown creator of this concept.) She explained that every "No" was one step closer to a "yes" --- and in order to be successful, you simply have to get the 100 "No's" out of the way. Let me tell you, there is great power in saying, "I already have 86 rejections. Only 14 more to go!" Believe me, by the time you get to 100, you'll be successful.

3) Think smaller. Not everyone is a Mark Twain or J.K. Rowling. Some of us are just ordinary, girl-next-door type writers. We go to PTA meetings; we watch our kids play ball; we go out with our friends. You don't have to sell a best-selling novel. Try working with newspapers, trade magazines, or local businesses. Success is only a footstep away.

4) Send 10 submissions every day. Okay, so you're not that prolific? Wrong! You don't have to write 10 articles each day, you only have to query 10 places each day. Or send recycled queries (queries that were rejected by one editor, but completely usable for another publication). Email local businesses, or call friends that know a business owner. Networking is the key to success, and all submissions are a form of networking.

5) Promote yourself. Do you have a website? (Ha! You have me there! Mine isn't completed yet.) Do you have business cards? Write a blog. Get a small advertisement in the PTA newsletter. Join the Chamber of Commerce. Tell your friends what you do. Networking is the key to success (see #4 above).

Rejection is just another of life's lessons. Don't dwell on the negative. Put a positive spin on it, and let it work to your advantage. When you're a complete success, you'll know that you really and truly earned your right to write.


Newer Post Older Post Home