Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Top 10 Countdown to Beating the Rejection Letter Blues

Any writer out there actively submitting has probably received a rejection letter at some point in their career. Or should I say hundreds of rejection letters?

With every rejection letter received, it's difficult not to feel discouraged. So how do you beat the rejection letter blues? Here is my top ten countdown to beating the rejection letter blues.

10. Ignore it. Rejection letter? What rejection letter?

9. Toss it. Shred it. Ball it. Rip it. Burn it. Scribble over it.... Whatever will help get that frustration out and make you feel better.

8. Gorge yourself on a pint of double chocolate fudge ice cream. It's cliché, but it's been known to help.

7. Cry. Hey, sometimes a good cry is all it takes.

6. Curse the editor/agent (to yourself or to an empty room, of course). Their loss for not realizing what a wonderful writer you are. They'll eat their words when you make the NY Times Bestseller.

5. Call up your best friend/writing partner/critique partner/spouse/mother and let them remind you what a wonderful writer you are. The pep talk does wonders for a wounded ego.

4. Stash the rejection letter with all the others you've been collecting. They'll make a great bonfire when you do sell. The bigger the collection, the closer you are to your goal. That collection is validation that you are doing your job and pursuing your dreams. Have you heard about the size of Stephen King's collection of rejection letters?

3. Realize that each person is entitled to his/her own opinion. Getting published is about more than having good quality writing and a stellar story. It's about being at the right place, at the right time, and finding that one editor/agent who "gets" your writing and is enthusiastic enough to stand behind you 110% percent. There are hundreds of editors and agents out there. You're bound to find one that's a good fit for you. Scratch this editor/agent off your list and move on to the next one.

2. Learn from the rejection. Now we're talking! Did the editor/agent point out anything they liked and disliked? Did they give any pointers on your strengths/weaknesses? How can you make your proposal better so that the next time, it won't be a rejection letter but an acceptance letter waiting for you?

1. Send out 5 more queries for every rejection letter. Everyone knows you have to go through 100 No's before you can get to your first Yes. Each No is a step closer to a Yes. Get submitting!


Evonne Wareham said...

You are so right.

Savanna Kougar said...

Mai, I luv it!

Mai Christy Thao said...

Thanks, girls!

Edie said...

Mai, great list! I go with #5, though I email my CPs instead of calling. I like #3, too. And because of #2, I went back to paranormal romances instead of women's ficttion. Almost every agent who requested the full of my women's fiction cited market demand as the reason for not signing me.

If the demand changes, I have these books. In the meantime, I'm loving the book I'm writing and the characters. It's all good.