You may remember a few blog posts ago, I talked about Rejection Misconceptions. (If you haven't read it, feel free to wander away for a moment to do so). Anyway, I had an interesting thing happen to me the other day. I received a rejection.
When I saw the email from my agent come through with a publishing house name in the subject line, my heart quickened. Would it be a request for the full manuscript or a "Thanks, but no thanks."
And because I've already told you that I received a rejection, you know which one it was.
I am a little embarrassed to admit that after allowing myself a couple of minutes to whine to God about this disappointment, my first thought was, "My manuscript stinks. What can I do to improve it?"
OK...back up. Let's read a portion of my previous blog post:
Her question is one I've heard a thousand times from other writers. And it reminded me of a common misconception writers have. The misconception is:Hello. (Insert eye roll)
There is one perfect way to write my article in order for it to be accepted, and I need to figure out what it is.
This is so not true.
So I had to consciously remind myself that just because my ms isn't right for this house, does not mean it's bad. It doesn't mean I need to scrap the whole thing and start from scratch. It just means this particular editor doesn't know a good thing when she sees it. Just kidding (sort of). What it really means is that either the timing was bad or it wasn't a good fit.
As my oh-so-wise agent noted: "Every rejection is one step closer to finding the right house."
Whatever the reason for the rejection, I now have a choice. I can either wallow, drowning my sorrow by eating endless gallons of ice cream OR I can put a band-aid on the sting and focus on something else. I choose the band-aid.
And maybe one gallon of ice cream.