When you're an author, rejection in some form is inevitable. The question is: do you speed along to your destination, never looking in your rearview; or do you gauge your mileage, and use your turn signals so others on the road get a sense of your direction. I started a new blog this past week called Rejection Road: Publishing Success Stories. The intention is to promote authors and inspire writers, with published authors sharing their anecdotes of traveling Rejection Road.
Everyone deals with rejection differently, however. For some, it is a badge of honor. For others, it is a negative occurrence, never to be discussed once it has happened. While I respect both approaches, I'd never really considered that rejection was something to be shunned until I started asking around about it. The word alone can be somewhat unpleasant - REJECT - conjuring images of the defeating pound of an inkpad-dipped stamp across your pristine manuscript. However, I like to think of rejection as a marker of my chosen career path, or perhaps better stated as my "vocation" .... and that is writing.
Does acknowledging your rejections diminish the perceived quality of your writing? Again, I don't think so. I think it acknowledges your humanity. At the same time, I completely respect those who would rather avoid any mention of it once that road has been traveled. Perhaps in this competitve publishing climate, a discussion of rejection makes people feel vulnerable to derision: i.e. If those agents didn't like your work, then why would I? Yet, that's like saying because so-and-so is not your friend, then I won't be either. We make our own choices about what to like and what not to like. Writing just exposes writers to more feedback on those choices.
Personally, I'm rather enjoying reading about the efforts and successes of those in the realm of words. And I hope authors will continue to contribute. There's a great piece this week about JT Ellison's journey to publishing success called All the Pretty Queries. If you're traveling now, or have traveled, Rejection Road, pull over for the scenic view.
Causes Kellyann Zuzulo Supports
PLAN International Leukemia and Lymphoma Foundation