Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Survival Tip #13: Wallow a Little Then Let it Go

I don't have to tell all of you that rejection stings.  We've all been there - if not with our writing then at least in life.  (And if you meet a person who says they've never been rejected ever, wonder if they've got a bridge to sell you, too.)

First let me start off by saying I don't think mine is the generally accepted way to handle rejection.  In general, we're all supposed to just suck it up.  And for godsakes, don't talk about it on the internet.  Makes you look like a loser or some such crap.  (A notion probably put forth by the same people who claim to never have been rejected, I assume.)


What I do to combat rejection is I wallow in it a little.  I bitch.  I complain.  Sometimes I write a blog post or two trying to figure out what the hell went wrong.  (Always without being specific with the exact names of agents and agencies - I'm wallowing, but I'm not insane.)  The point is, I let it out.

Then I let it go.

Sure, my last rejection stung like the Dickens.  And sure, I pissed and moaned about it to friends - and perfect strangers on the blogs.  Then I let it go.  It is what it is.  You have to get it out and let it go so you can move on.

Which means more submissions and ultimately more rejections.  And perhaps more wallowing.  Trust me, though, over time rejections do sting less - unless it's a submission you really had your heart set on, but even that sting goes away faster with each instance. 

And hey, if my wallowing helps another writer see that he isn't alone in his pain, then that's even better. 

What do you think?  Do you wallow or do you hold it inside?  Or do you just wallow privately where no one can see you?  Does seeing someone else go through the same pain as you lessen it for you a little?


  1. It really depends on the agent and the circumstances. Some agencies I just shrug and carry on, whereas others I've been known to get down. I don't get bitchy--I just get blue. I only cried once, but that's because the agent said I was soooo close. It just sucked because I knew with my end of university coming up that I wasn't going to be able to focus on writing unless I already had an agent. If that makes sense.

  2. Wallow! Wallow for weeks and months until I can't do anything but wallow some more! Isn't that sad!

    Sorry about your recent rejection (read your post on the weekend, didn't respond as I was crazy busy). Yep, that one must have hurt - but good that the agent isn't taking on something she feels only 'like' about!!

    Keep at it, B.E. - I know there's the perfect agent out there for you. And if you need to wallow or bitch here or on your other blogs, that's fine with me!!

  3. "Liking a lot" is almost worst than "hating." Loving is even better. That said, even when an agent loves a book, s/he might not find an editor who feels the love. Been there. Then you might have an editor who loves it but can't get the editorial board to feel the same. ::shrug:: It is what it is--a business, no matter how emotionally invested we are. That said? Oh yeah. I don't wallow. I rail. And shake my fist and nominate whoever for the Stupid Club! All without names, of course, and usually privately within a very small cadre of friends.

    Everyone has their own way of coping. We do what we do. Now, the thing is to not get so wrapped around the axle that you never move forward. You, my friend, don't have the problem. I have faith in your abilities, B.E. You'll find the place for your work, sooner or later!


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