Rejection is a part of being a writer. Lots of writers got rejected many times before they got picked up. Becca Fitzpatrick took 5 years to sell her YA angel book Hush Hush, Wither by Lauren Destefano was rejected 120 times before it was picked up, and even Stephen King was rejected. (His book ‘On Writing’ is a great read by the way, highly recommended.)
I’ve had heaps of rejections myself, so I know what it feels like. I don’t know what it’s like overseas, but here in Australia its very rare to get a reason for your rejection, that’s what I’ve found anyway. Usually it’s ‘If you haven’t heard back from us in X amount of months consider it a no’ or a standard ‘Sorry, your story isn’t for us I wish you the best of luck placing it somewhere else…’
I understand why they do this, I know publishers and agents get a crazy amount of submissions and just don’t have the time, but just once I’d like to know why. Was it good but didn’t suit? Was it too long? Needs more work? Just plain bad? I’m left to assume my story was just bad.
A lot of editors when giving advice about rejection say to remember that it’s not you being rejected. But it is. It’s my baby. I put my hard work, my heart and soul into a story, so when it’s rejected, it’s personal. Rejection hurts like hell, especially when you’ve entered a competition that you really wanted to win, or the agent you really wanted said no or something similar.
I confess, I cry when I get rejected. I give myself a day to mourn, one day. Then I pick myself up, look for somewhere else to send the story, or start a new one. I don’t give up, don’t let rejection hold me down. How could I when the next answer might be a yes?
As they say, if at first you don’t succeed, try and try again.
I like to have stories under consideration, because when something is under consideration there is still hope.
So don’t give up when you receive that rejection letter or email, or you never hear back. Some one, someday will say yes. You just have to keep writing, keep believing.