Monday, 1 April 2013

The Other Face of Rejection

 Being on submission is like being at the high school dance, standing all alone by the punch bowl, praying the cute guy will cross the gym floor and ask you to dance.

Getting rejections is when that same cute guy crosses the gym floor and asks the girl next to you—and then you have to hold her purse and watch as they fall in love.

Do any of these sound familiar to you?

"...just not right for me." 

"I didn't connect with the main character the way I had hoped."

"I'm not sure how we can make this stand out in our current list."

I am an unpublished writer trying to get my YA contemporary coming of age story noticed. It seems like there isn't even ONE editor on the planet who is willing to take a chance on me.

But I know I'm not alone. I read somewhere that only 2% of manuscripts get published. That means for every hundred novels an editor reads, they'll only pick two.

EGAD!!! I can't imagine having a job where I do 98% of the work for FREE.

I love my job. I'm a Nurse and it's very fulfilling, but I wouldn't do it for free.

Editors, I now realize, aren't people who start the day rubbing their palms together wondering which writer's dreams they shatter with a form rejection.

Editors are people who are SO in love with words that they're willing to slog through ninety-eight novels (think of the paper cuts!) not driven by a salary, but by the HOPE that they'll find a story to fall in love. Otherwise, what's the point?

So, while you're leaning against the refreshment table, trying to make googly eyes at the cute guy across the gym, remember he's looking to fall in love too.

I raise my glass to all the love connections that will happen this year. I hope you're one of them—and me too.


Arianna said...

That was a really good analogy. And to be honest, with my creative writing class, we have to read two stories every night and edit them and the vast majority of them are terrible. And I'm actually paying for this class so I'm paying to be miserable. Like most of these stories I can't stand and they're so bad, but I still have to read and edit them, then write a one page end note on them.

Editors are like gods in my eyes. I could not be an editor, like for real.

Anonymous said...

Great post. :)

Daisy Carter said...

YA contemps are just a hard sell, I think (at least, that's what I keep telling myself when mine keeps coming back to my agent with "it's not you, it's me" rejections).

We can do it! There are editors out there that will love us, even if we did spill punch on our dresses.

Great post!

Hey It's Dalaina Renee! said...

I havent been sending in my work like I should be. But I need to find an agent. That is my first task. And I need to finish my novel! Great advice!

Unknown said...

Great post!

^ Arianna up there, you sure you don't want to quit and be an accountant?

Michael Seese said...

Well said. And best of luck. See you at the top...

Laila N Mysis said...

Good heavens, you're so positive, I love your outlook ^_^ I would still be seeing editors as the big bad bullies, just because it's so much more easy to take out your frustration on them.

Lovely post ♥

Arianna said...

Tuan Ho- Are you sure you want to start this conversation with me? -__-

Bethany, you know your blog is awesome when you got spam on it! ^^^^

Marisa Reichardt said...

I try to tell myself that every "no" gets us closer to the "yes" and, depending on what kind of a day I'm having, sometimes that makes me feel better and sometimes it doesn't. This is a lovely post. We've all been that girl holding our friend's purse while she danced and we've all been that writer who has been rejected. Get up, brush off, try again. I think I see Danny Zuco crossing the dance floor toward you right now...

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