Thank you for the rejection…

A very talented writing friend of mine was rejected this week by a venue she’s been aiming at for years. Again. And, I was rejected this week by an agent. Again.

Several of us discussed the rejections via email. We’re all writing veterans and rejections these days aren’t like they used to be ten or more years back when we were starting out. Back then we’d be bruised and injured, our spirits limping along because our work had been found lacking. It often took a lot of chocolate, alcohol, and good friends to get started again.

But these days, we look at rejections as blessings. The editor stated to my friend, that though she wasn’t interested in that particular story, she’d love to see others. Guess what? My friend has a lot of stories to offer!

Thank you for this rejection!

In my case, I’ve been submitting this novel (not my first) for the past eight months. I’ve sent to eleven agents and four publishers. When I get a rejection, I go get a glass of wine to celebrate. It is far superior to receive a rejection than to get no answer at all. From anyone. Ever.

My novel has changed and grown better because of the information I was given in rejections over the years. The novel has changed from “a mediocre mystery of little consequence” (2001) into a “well-written, fast paced book, reminiscent of the Sam Spade error of crime fiction,”(2010) even if it is too short for the markets they sell to. Another rejection mentioned that the novel “feels a lot like Sue Grafton, who might not sell today, either” (2011). I am flattered and humbled by the latest comparisons.

Thank you for these rejections! 

The point is that rejections can be chock full of information that help us to move FORWARD in our writing careers. Revise that work and resubmit. Sell it or have it rejected, then repeat the process. 

Rejections are evidence that you are a professional writer. Writers write, then edit, then submit. The way we write and how many edits we do may vary, but the process doesn’t.

Remember to be thankful for the lessons the rejections teach you. And keep in mind, if you don’t submit, you can’t sell anything, either!

Keep writing!



About NL Quatrano

Award-winning author, speaker, editor and ghost writer, Nancy owns a full-time editing, writing and specialty publishing business: On-Target Words/WC Publishing. Volunteer/member of professional writing organizations including Florida Writers Assoc., Sisters in Crime, and AWAI. 2010 Professional Woman of the Year by the NAPW. Linked in Editor Pick May 2013. International Women's Leadership Association nominee for Outstanding Leadership 2014. Author of Murder in Black and White, Still Shot, Merciful Blessings, and numerous published short stories.
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7 Responses to Thank you for the rejection…

  1. Sharon says:

    Great post, Nancy!

  2. Great look on rejection. Another good piece of wisdom from you :o)

    • NL Quatrano says:

      You’re very kind, Ms. Cynthia.I just want writers toknowthat everyone gets them andwe can make good use of some of them.If we stay with it long enough, wecan get good stuff from everything.Thanks forstopping by! ________________________________ On-Target Words: Professional Writing Services (TM) an NL Quatrano, LLC company ________________________________

      Articles,Content Editing,Copy Writing,Ghost Writing, Resumes, and more… 386-546-5164

  3. Chelle says:

    Wow, Nancy. You got some very nice comments, even if they didn’t accept your story. It means you’re getting closer. Keep up the good work. You’re a great writer!

    • NL Quatrano says:

      Thanks, Chelle. I’ve kept this folder of rejections ever since CH Admirand talked to us about hers back in the NJRW days. She’d justsold her first book to Avalon and wanted usall to knowthat it took alot of rejections to get sold. LOL. Now she has a dozen books published, I’ll bet. Thanks for stopping by and joining in. I’ll bet you have some stories, too! ________________________________ On-Target Words: Professional Writing Services (TM) an NL Quatrano, LLC company ________________________________

      Articles,Content Editing,Copy Writing,Ghost Writing, Resumes, and more… 386-546-5164

  4. Jack Owen says:

    Constructive feedback with a rejection – providing the responders qualities and qualifications are respected – are terrific. BUT it’s well to know WHO the reader/rejector is. A first-day-on-the-job intern or a grumpy old geezer/geezerette itchy for a cigarette.
    You could write a book (and some have) listing the WHY’s of rejection, which have nothing to do with your submission. There are (*fill in the blank) English language publishers each with their own agenda and audience. When the bean-counters and marketing backroom crew determine the quota is complete – you’re out of luck.
    If your friend is successful with some publications, but gets a head-butt from ONE outfit…say ‘bye – and try the other (*fill in the blank) venues.
    If a potential publisher rejects the mss because it doesn’t fit the word-count they want – find one (in publisher’s guideline) that fits. You are actually better place in today’s e-market which is seeking smaller (novellas) for the micro attention-span of the current crop of reading TWITS ;^))
    Now – pour… and ponder your next move. Cheers!

    • NL Quatrano says:

      Absolutely great points, Jack!I’ve foundover the yearsthat those form letter rejections were the ones sent out by the apprentices and interns in the publishing offices. The ones written with care and instruction were usually offered by the “old-timers” in the business. With all the changes in thepublishing world, I don’t know how many more quality rejections anyone will get.I guess the onlymoral to the story is tolearn fromwhat isuseful and not give up. Thanks for a great comment!

      ________________________________ On-Target Words: Professional Writing Services (TM) an NL Quatrano, LLC company ________________________________

      Articles,Content Editing,Copy Writing,Ghost Writing, Resumes, and more… 386-546-5164

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