Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Journaling: Rejection

Describe a time when you felt rejected.

Well, this one is easy. But I don't think I'll talk about the "ultimate rejection." I think I'd rather go somewhere else.

I packed the envelope so carefully, including only what they requested, nothing more and nothing less. I had worked on the contents of that envelope for nearly a year, although it was in my head longer than that. I was sending more than a query package, I was sending a dream. All my hopes were pinned on that one envelope. I sent it off with a quick prayer and a kiss for good luck - and then I waited.

About two months later, a letter came with the publisher's address on the outside. I was excited and freaked out - what would it say? The moment I opened the envelope, I saw the words, "regret to inform" and knew. It was the most devastating moment of my life, even after dealing with an ugly divorce only a few years before.

My first reaction was total depression. I cried for about an hour, holding the letter close to my chest, rocking back and forth on the couch, just crying. Then the rage came. I was furious that they rejected my work when they had published so much that I considered inferior to mine. I crumbled the letter into a ball and threw it across the room. I screamed at it. I left it on the floor in the corner for a few days. It took about that long for me to realize that this was a learning experience and that by receiving my first rejection letter, I was a REAL WRITER. All writers deal with rejection and you have to develop a pretty thick skin or you will eventually just give up. Since I don't want to give up, I decided to deal with the rejection and move on. It made me want to write more - and write better. Rejection doesn't have to be a negative experience. Sometimes it makes you spring into action.

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