Keep Going in the Face of Rejection

23 05 2013

NOI’ve watched so many writer friends struggling with rejections lately, and I feel their discouragement and pain. It’s hard to pick yourself up and keep going when you’re continually hearing No, No, No, or worse yet, no feedback at all.

When I came across this comment on Margie Lawson’s site, I thought it was worth sharing:

“I made a commitment to myself that no matter what happened with my writing life, I would be okay. I think we need to remind ourselves that it’s the trying that matters most. That shows courage and faith. We are at our very best when we try, so I would have been darned proud of myself whether or not I got published.”  ~Kieran Kramer

If we can adopt an attitude like this, we’ll keep pursuing our craft, keep putting words down on paper, keep remembering our dream. Not our dream of being published, but our dream of being writers, of expressing ourselves, of crafting new worlds, of making sense out of life.

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Learning from the Classic Authors

30 11 2012

Learning from the Classic Authors

Even the greatest authors have faced rejection and bad reviews. Here’s a sneak peek at some of the things I’ve been learning while I’ve immersed myself in the world of classic and famous authors the past two months.





Why Do You Write?

28 09 2010

I stumbled across some fabulous quotes on writing and rejection, again as was researching an article that’s due to a publisher. This research was a bit off topic, but once again my wanderings proved fruitful (though they delayed my writing assignment).

As part of an interview with Alice McDermott, the Catholic author shared advice from literary agent Harriet Wasserman, who claimed that “writing and publishing have very, very, very little to do with each other; almost nothing.” Have to chuckle (and agree). She continues, “For writers, it’s a matter not so much of deciding you will write fiction with the hope that you will publish fiction, but rather writing fiction because there is nothing else you can do that will give you a satisfying sense of yourself or of life.”

McDermott expounds on Wasserman’s statements: “…early in your career it’s very easy to lose sight of the fact that the work itself is the most essential thing. As frustrating and depressing and discouraging as a day spent writing can be, that day of work is also the best reward this career will give you. That’s where your satisfaction has to come from-from creating those challenges for yourself, sentence by sentence, using whatever talent you have. You don’t do it because you’ve got a contract with a publishing house. You do it because you have to, because that’s what you’re here for.”

Getting back to the real reason we write can often lift us from the doldrums of rejection letters and help us take our work to the next level.





Writing a Bestseller

23 04 2010

by Darvin Atkeson

All speeches need an inspirational takeaway. So I asked my Muse for something eternal, unique, and beautiful. In what way could my life or my words be inspiring?

One of the greatest inspirations is hearing how others overcame the odds to reach success. That’s why author talks are so successful (and why people clap even if you mess up–most attendees have always dreamed of being a famous author). But that success is ordinary, although it may not seem so.

Anyone can become an author if they study hard, learn the craft, put hours of sitting in a chair and spilling their guts, keeping submitting in the face of rejection, and never, ever give up. But that’s so NOT what people want to hear. They already know that. And many of them have given it a shot. They want a magic pill they can take that transforms their idea into a runaway bestseller.

And so what do I, an author who has written for 20 some years have to share that will inspire the audience eager for pearls of wisdom? Persistence and perseverance are the keys? Never giving up? OK, let’s be honest: maybe published authors are more stubborn or perhaps more thickheaded?

So that won’t make my speech inspiring. What will? I decided to talk about how I overcame obstacles in my path and went on to conquer them. Some seemed insurmountable at the time, but I have a secret that keeps me on track. I’ll share that secret and the source of my inspiration in Friday’s post.





How Do You Deal with Rejection?

31 08 2009

I’m looking for suggestions from fellow writers on ways they deal with rejection. Post your helpful hints or healing therapies, special potions, or magic formulas at Romance Writers on the Journey for a chance to win prizes.

Here’s the address:
http://romancewritersonthejourney.wordpress.com/2009/08/30/meet-debut-author-laurie-j-edwards/

Come on, even those of you who are mega-successes have rejection stories to share. Eating a whole gallon of ice cream? Bawling in the shower? Throwing darts at the editor or agents picture? Pounding a hole in your office wall? Or perhaps something more constructive (unless you’d already been planning to enlarge your office by knocking down a wall).

Calling a supportive crit group member?? Running 10 miles on a treadmill? (Hmm, just think how svelte that would make me.) Spending a session on your psychaitrist’s couch?

One of the crit groups I belonged to rewarded members with a candy bar for every rejection they received, and every year, we had a rejection party and gave out prizes for the cruelest rejection, the nicest rejection, the funniest, etc. And the person who had gotten the most rejection letters won the grand prize. In another group, we ritually burned our rejection letters in a bonfire while chanting, “I am an excellent writer and I deserve to be published.”

Okay, so I admit it. I hang out with wackos. At least I haven’t danced naked under a full moon while chanting curses against editors…yet. Hmmm, think my crit group would go for that one?

So pop on over to Romance Writers on the Journey and share your rejection stories. If you don’t have a solution, then just share your most painful rejection. We’ll all sympathize, which is bound to help.