Purple Prose + rejections

Are Rejections Really that Bad?

If you’re a writer, rejection is a nasty word you can’t avoid. Well, I guess you can if you never query. But if you hoped to be published, it’s something you’ll eventually have to face.

A rejection isn’t bad or evil. It tells you something. Maybe your writing isn’t there yet. Maybe the story just didn’t excite that agent or editor. Maybe one of the agent’s clients recently wrote a book with a similar premise. Yes, the rejection might sting. But it won’t kill you.

As writers, we tend to get too caught up in the rejections. We easily forget there are bigger things in life that are more important. My first born son (who turns twelve next month) was three months premature. Do you know what it feels like to watch something so frail cling to life? On Monday afternoon, my youngest two kids were on their school bus when it was involved in an accident (above photo). All thirty kids were okay, although many were shaken. The driver suffered minor injuries. But the photos and my crying daughter affected me in a way no rejection ever will.

Before you start querying, make a list of ten or more things that have happened to you that are worse than a rejection (or things that would be worse than a rejection). Post it by your computer. Next time you get a rejection, put it into perspective by reflecting on your list. Only then will you see it for what it really is: a small blip in your writing career.

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Are Rejections Really that Bad? + rejections