Posts Tagged: rejection
I never heard editors talk about how disturbed and insecure writers might become as a result of relentless rejection, living every day with what James Salter called “the feeling of injustice.” It was more fun for editors to characterize their jobs as overseeing petting zoos full of needy misfits and narcissists, a point of view that was always amusing to other editors but infuriating to writers.
I know of no level of success where writers stop getting rejected (and stop at least occasionally feeling bummed about it). People generally make more noise about publications than rejections, the same way people mostly share pictures of happy moments on Facebook, making their sad moments invisible.
Just as there is subjective rejection, there’s subjective acceptance—the editor who sparks to your characters, your plot, your manuscript because of their personal experiences—and you want someone who understands your story to be the champion it needs.
Let’s be real. Rejection sucks, especially if you’re a writer trying to get your work published....more
For all the aspiring writers who sent out those applications a few months back, the day of reckoning soon approaches: acceptances (or lack thereof) are beginning to get sent out. To offer words of support, TheMFAYears blog shares testimonies from several candidates currently attending MFA programs that might offer the anxious waiting writer some comfort, or at least solidarity....more
Rude rejection letters could cost publishers the next big author, warns Hannah MacDonald, founder of September Publishing. MacDonald told colleagues at the FutureBook conference that publishers need to be kinder, reports The Independent:
Hannah MacDonald said the industry should be more constructive with its criticism and rebuffs, as there is a danger that potential stars might abandon their dreams.
I did give it up. I actually destroyed the manuscript, I even went on my friends computers and erased it.” He said he retrieved the text by searching in the email outbox of an old iMac computer.
Marlon James, who recently won the Man Booker Prize for A Brief History of Seven Killings, tells the Guardian how having his first manuscript rejected seventy-eight times before getting published almost made him quit writing....more
Writers are constantly being judged by their work, and naturally that means a regular stream of rejection. But not all rejections are bad. Over at Vol. 1 Brooklyn, JS Breukelaar looks back at past rejections and considers why rejection is sometimes important:
Rejection is the content and context of this life that has chosen us and it forces us to face-off with our doubts and grow stronger.
To master dialogue, description, subtext, plot, structure, character, time, point of view, beginnings, endings, theme and much besides is a Herculean labour, not made more appealing by the fact that you always—always—fail.
First, say hello to our new Saturday media editor, Arielle Bernstein!
Then, in “All The World’s A Stage,” Grant Snider neatly illustrates our inner performer....more
At Guernica, Alexandria Peary observes a fine but lethal distinction between being declined and being rejected, a difference that had very real effects on the literary ambitions of nineteenth-century female writers. While to decline a submission implies thoughtful deliberation over that particular work, rejection is an all-encompassing denouncement of something larger: a category or, in this case, a gender:
Women writers in the nineteenth century—when creative writing really got going as a possible profession—faced more rejections than declines, though probably more than a spoonful of dejection.
Thrice Fiction editor RW Spryszak has some advice for writers: rejection isn’t personal. Sending hate mail to editors is no way to get published. Writers may resent changes that editors request, but it’s all part of the process:
Writers need to have the perspective to understand that most editors in the small press world also own the shop.
“Then again, you might not be the funny type. How about making the rejection letter poignant, depressing, or even hurtful? Push the envelope. Your audience is a bunch of bored writers begging for a little drama in their pathetic lives. Never be sort of poignant!...more
“The Rejection Generator rejects writers before an editor looks at a submission. Inspired by psychological research showing that after people experience pain they are less afraid of it in the future, The Rejection Generator helps writers take the pain out of rejection.”
Here’s a handy tool to support “rejection immunity” and ease the fear of sending submissions into the wild....more
“… Professor Sandel says a “philosophically frank” university should tell those it rejects that “we don’t regard you as less deserving than those who were admitted” and that “it is not your fault that when you came along society happened not to need the qualities you had to offer.”
In a similar vein, those accepted should be told: “You are to be congratulated, not in the sense that you deserve credit for having the qualities that led to your admission – you do not – but only in the sense that the winner of a lottery is to be congratulated....more