The agony of defeat

Rejection is a constant companion when you’re a writer.

When I first started out, everything I wrote got rejected. It didn’t deter me, though–I knew I just had to get better. Work on my craft. Network. Write write write. Read read read. Read about writing. And write more. And that’s just what I did. Gradually I sold my work and people asked me to be a part of their anthologies. The rejections for my novels went from photocopied form rejections to personal emails.

A personal rejection is very much a double-edged sword. The agent or editor obviously liked my work enough to read it, usually to the end. They tell me my work has merit, they enjoyed the story, they loved the characters. It’s just not exactly what they’re looking for, or maybe they can’t sell it. It’s frustrating because while I know I’ll continue to get better at my craft, the fact is they’re rejecting my work for subjective reasons. It wasn’t for them. I can relate to this. There’s been plenty of times when someone’s favorite book leaves me cold or someone points out all the flaws in my all-time favorite book. IT means that I’m at the stage where luck plays a big role. Right agent at the right time and all that.

Luck favors the prepared, as they say.

Excuse me. I’m going to go write now.


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