(by Lisa Hall-Wilson/WANNA Commons)
Some of you might think I'm crazy. Others might wonder what I put in my drink. There might even be a wild thought it might be time for me to hang up my writing pen.
But just hear me out...
While I've been writing for more than 40 years, I only became a professional writer six years ago. I try to find time for my writing every day. I've sent my "babies" out into the world and dealt with almost every kind of rejection letter out there.
The "no response at all" rejection letter .
The generic email rejection letter letting me know my story isn't the right fit.
Occasionally the personalize rejection letter with kind words of encouragement.
It doesn't matter how we receive it, getting a rejection letter can still hurt our writers' pride. And sometimes it makes us doubt our own skills as a storyteller.
But it shouldn't any more.
While we're never going to do the happy dance over being rejected by yet another agent or publisher, there ARE three treasures hidden inside each one:
THE PERSEVERANCE TEST
Becoming a published author is a long, slow process. Dues have to be paid, sincere industry connections made, and in a way, writers have to prove themselves worthy of their future audience. Writing isn't for the faint of heart or those in it for the quick buck (cuz there aren't any quick bucks to be made I'm afraid!)
THE CHANCE TO EVOLVE
Every rejection allows us to work on our presentation. Maybe our query letters need tweaking. Maybe our agent or publisher list needs updating. Even the stories themselves might benefit from a little more polishing. When we incorporate the lesson found within each rejection letter, we become stronger writers who are one step closer to that coveted book contract.
THE RIGHT TO CELEBRATE
Rejection letters make any successes we receive along the way, no matter how big or how small, all the more sweeter. They help remind us we are stronger than our temporary setbacks. They allow us to show compassion for our fellow writers when they feel their own sting from being turned down in their pursuit of publication.There is also a camaraderie which allows us to do that happy dance even for the birth of a book not of our own making.
So I say bring on the rejection letters. I KNOW in my own heart I'm a good writer. Just because one of my "babies" haven't found a home yet doesn't mean it isn't loved. And when the time is right, someone else will learn to love them as well!