Journey to Published: Expecting Rejection

February 22, 2013

You’ve signed a contract. You’ve done edits. You have a release date. You feel invincible!

And then the next rejection comes.

I honestly never thought about it one way or another, but it was a weird feeling realizing that rejection would still be part of the game after publication. I mean, sure, it’s not surprising, but I think we focus so hard on getting published, we don’t always think about what happens after publication (I mean beyond becoming rich and famous, of course).

Of course, the reality of the situation is, if you plan to keep getting published, you have to keep putting your work out there. You have to keep submitting, and whether that’s to your publisher, agents, or another publisher, rejection can still be the name of the game.

I signed the contract for my first book in October of 2011. I signed the contract (with a different publisher) for my second book in July of 2012. I signed the contract for my third book in December of 2012 and I got offered a fourth contract in January of 2013…and yet, there were rejections in between all those contracts. Rejections from editors and agents. Rejections on queries, partials, and fulls. Luckily none of the rejections came from publishers whom had offered me a contract in the past, and most came from agents on projects I later sold, but that doesn’t mean rejection wasn’t a possibility (or it might not be a possibility in the future).

Rejection is always a possibility. The nice thing about rejection after publication, is you have a contract to pull out and remind yourself, gosh darn it, you’re good enough. It should also remind you that this is your career and the only way to keep building that career is to keep writing, keep improving, and keep submitting. Rejection be darned.



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