Rejection. Such a harsh word that everyone wants to avoid in whatever they want to pursue; many of us don’t even like rejecting other people because it would not be nice to do so when they come to you for a request, it’s just so hard to say no.
This is not the case in the publishing industry.
Every writer must have been rejected at some point in his life; not once but dozens of times. Either by an agent, an editor or a publisher, rejection is something that follows every writer’s career. So if you are thinking of publishing your work with a publisher, or signing on with an agent or editor, you best be prepared for a lot of rejections.
Rejection does hurt; we will not lie about that. Whenever a writer receives a rejection over something they have worked so hard on; it does hurt. A writer enters into a state of Grief consisting of 5 stages:
- Denial: “how could my work be rejection… no way … this can’t be right”
- Anger: “who do they think they are! They should be glad I wanted to have my work published by them! They have no idea what they are missing! %^$@#@$%#”
- Bargaining: “well what can I do for you to make it better? I can write whatever you want me to … I am willing to do that if you accept it”
- Depression: “I’m a failure … a sad excuse of a writer … my writing sucks”
- Acceptance: “you know … maybe they do have a point, maybe they are right about this … maybe I can improve it based on what they said I’m lacking, maybe then it could be a better novel”
Now how much time does each stage takes really depends on the writer, some writers should get stuck in depression for a long time while other can quickly learn to accept it and move on.
The thing is rejection is seen as such a negative thing…well it is…. But writers should look at the bright side of things and accept the fact that their work is going to be rejected by many people and if they continue to improve themselves and are determined to continue with their quest to publish their work, perhaps one day they might get an acceptance letter among the many that reject your work.
Writers should keep in mind that rejection from a publisher or agent could mean that their writing is not up to the standards yet and therefore they can push themselves to improve what they have done into something that writers themselves did not know they could achieve; so in a way that rejection letter help writers in becoming better writer with a better understanding of themselves, their work and the industry.
Writers really have to keep in mind that it is almost never personal, the rejection letter is not an attack against the writer but based on what was presented to them so writers should not take into consideration that this publisher/agent carries a grudge against them for no apparent reason.
At the end of the day, writers should keep in mind that rejections are based on opinions. Publishers might not like the idea that was submitted to them and it is their opinion that this is not a good story; other publishing houses might think the idea is brilliant! Because this is an opinion and not a fact.
Please writers, don’t respond to rejection letter because it is going to be pointless, no publisher or agent would even give it a second look. It could even hurt your chances in the future to ever getting published.
Rejections letters can also help in making writers stronger, it helps build up their ability to take bad news; after all in the future you might start receiving bad reviews so you would need to be strong to take that.
You know, rejections letters aren’t always the publishers fault, the story that was submitted could be the best new book of the year and yet it still gets rejected because the writer did not follow the submissions guild lines that the publisher has placed; so writers pay attention to those because it could get your book rejected.
Some of the most famous writers today were rejected before they hit the bestselling list, you’d be surprised when I mention some names like
- J.K Rowling
- Stephen King
- William Golding
Our piece of advice is to not let rejections letters push you down, you just need to keep trying, improving and of course never give up
– Untitled Chapter Team