Wednesday, 11 July 2012

Another Disappointment

Okay guys, here is my latest update on my journey to get published; and as you can tell from the heading…you’d better get out the tissues.
Yep that’s right, yet another rejection. I shouldn’t really use that word.  Rejection, it sounds so…final, so rude and I know that that is not the case.  I think that I mentioned that I had submitted to an agency, well today I received a letter, or should I say a ‘With Compliments’ slip stating, very politely, that they were unable to offer me representation.
I don’t want to sound negative, but I knew this was a long shot. The agency I approached is one of the biggest in Australia, maybe a tad out of my league, but hey…I had to give it a go. Now, I am going to keep harping on about this throughout my blogs, and it is just as much to reassure myself as it is to suggest to you, that these rejections are not a reflection on the quality of our work.  I truly believe that and you should too; if you don’t believe in your work, then don’t even bother to send it out. Don’t stop writing though.  If you get half as much pleasure and satisfaction from your writing as I do from mine, then it is worth every single second you pour into it, even if you have no intention, or desire, or opportunity to publish.
If you were a fly on the wall around my place you would often hear me talking to myself, one of my favourite topics is the preparation for the rejection letters. I am not being negative, though I imagine a lot of you might be thinking, hang on…she just said if you don’t have faith in your work don’t send it off, and now she’s saying she’s expecting rejection letters.  Let me reiterate, I am not being negative, what I am being is realistic. I don’t want to build my hope up just to have it shattered into a thousand pieces. I understand that this is a very subjective industry, and I know that this is likely going to be a long haul.  As a result, I want to prepare myself for the rejection letters so that when they arrive, I am not totally deflated, demoralised or depressed.
My reasoning above is good in theory, but not fool-proof, because no matter how much I prepare myself for the dreaded rejection letters, they still affect me. So…I went to collect the mail yesterday and sitting on top of a small pile of bills was an envelope that I recognised.  I recognised it because it was the self-addressed, stamped envelope that I sent off with my submission. I didn’t have to open it to know that it was a rejection, the envelope felt thin and empty, so too did my soul. I’ll be the first to admit that that’s a bit melodramatic, but at that point in time, that is how I felt.
Anyway, I walked back down the driveway dragging my bin behind me, that’s not an analogy, it’s just that Wednesday is bin day, I went inside, sat down and opened the envelope to read my letter, or should I say my With Compliments slip. Does anyone else see the irony here; that they are rejecting my work, with compliments? The point is, despite all of my preparation the wind was well and truly taken out of my sails for the rest of the day.  I felt dejected, disheartened and discouraged.  All of the things I was trying to avoid.  I guess I’m not as tough as I thought I was.
The thing is though; here I am today, writing.  I am writing this blog.  I am writing a short story, which I would like to enter into the The Annual Scarlet Stiletto Awards, and I am making notes to continue my second novel. In short I am plodding on. I have had my brief period of feeling low, and now I am once again full of confidence, determination and hope.  And that my friends is why it is important to prepare yourselves for those rejection letters, because when you get them, and you probably will, you have to be prepared to dust yourself off, get back to your keyboard and continue your work, and one day, the letter in your mail box, or the email in your inbox will be something better than a rejection letter, it will be a letter of acceptance.
Isn’t that something worth working towards?

And if you should fall...

Get up, dust yourself off...

and try again.

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