Yes, I'll explain why rejections have value, but first two things...
Number 1 - December's Overview
Without getting into too much detail, let me just say December was extremely stressful for me. And my writing - blog and book - suffered because of it.
Hopefully, though, I'm out of the woods and I'm looking forward to a more writing productive year.
Which brings me to the second thing...
Celebrate Good Times, Come on! It's a Celebration
I feel so bad not being able to host the Big Goals Blog Hop when Misha couldn't for a few weeks. I wish I could have been more committed, but it might have caused a nervous breakdown or three. Luckily, things have turned for the better for both of us, and we are now ready to pick up where we left off, without even missing a month (YAY!!!)
When Rejection is a Good Thing
So, you may know that my ongoing goal has been to get rejected 24 times. Since the day I set that goal, I've been in the writer slumps, given pep talks, been on writer highs, started a new bingo sheet, and failed in multiple ways. Yep, writing (and rejection) is an emotional roller coaster.
Rejections in 2017
I started the new bingo sheet sometime in April, and now have four boxes X'd - "Silence means No", "Too Much Going On", "Revise and Resubmit", and "No Market for the Book"
Silence Mean No
This is the Free space, so I checked it automatically, but I do have some manuscripts out that have not received any response.
"Revise and Resubmit"
In this case, the suggestion was to revamp my picture book into a chapter book. The person who rejected the manuscript was absolutely right about the market, but I don't have the time necessary to make it into a chapter book with my other ongoing projects. I have confidence, however, that with the right editor it will still sell as picture book.
"Too Much Going On" and "No Market for the Book"
These two were on the same manuscript, but different agents. Ironically, I think they rejected the manuscript for the same reason, which I discovered only after I was rejected by both. Taking into account the comments in both rejections, plus some constructive feedback from my critique partners, I figured out (I think) what it needs. So, I'm back to polishing for now. But I hope to send it off with new queries soon.
But why did I pick such a seemingly depressing goal in the first place? Because being rejected has helped me be a stronger writer.
For example, if I'm getting only form rejections or silence, then I know something is wrong. This could mean
No Writing is Wasted
But what if you've written something that will never be traditionally published - maybe never should be published? Don't you dare think it is wasted. All writing - the good, bad, the ugly. The personal, unpublishable, unmarketable, didactic, never-gonna-see-the-light-of-day writing. It's all important. It's all a part of you. Love it, cherish it, and put it in the drawer. Indefinitely if necessary.
When Rejection is a Bad Thing
The only time rejection is bad is when it makes you give up all your goals and dreams and start having dangerous thoughts about your worth. Rejections were never meant to cause this! Don't let it.
This is going to be my year.
Maybe I'll get rejected 24 times.
Maybe I'll polish up my manuscripts based on those rejections until I'm signing by an X in a contract instead of putting an X on my bingo sheet.
In the end, it doesn't matter. As long as I keep writing.
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I write about, with, for, and around kids all day. (Well, maybe I do the dishes too. Sometimes.)