Saturday, September 6, 2008

Licking my wounds


Last Tuesday, I got four rejections in ONE DAY!   Two of those rejection letters were particularly crushing because they were from an editor and an agent who had shown "interest." And, I received advice in two of the letters that was completely contradictory.

I barely had time to process these blows to my ego because I immediately had to rush to a PTA meeting (and now, btw, I'm kicking myself for not throwing my name in the hat for the vice-presidential nomination--I mean . . . PTA, soccer mom . . . I could totally do that job). Anyway, I didn't get to spend time wallowing in my misery until Wednesday when the noise of my life shut down for a bit.  I read back over my submission letters, manuscripts and synopses.  I looked over my notes about dreamy, pie-in-the-sky editors and agents.  And I sent my babies back out into the world.

So there.

I also indulged in a little retail therapy (thanks Michael Stars) and unhealthy indulgence (oreo Sonic blast).  Plus, I watched a great interview that Newbery Award winning author Kate diCamillo did for Adlit.org and WETA  (you can download it for free on itunes).  She said that she didn't know why she kept sending her work out after receiving so many rejections--she just knew she didn't want to die saying "I think I could have done it."  She also said that she had attended hundreds of writing workshops with super-talented people whom she knew would never be published because they didn't have the persistence and tenacity to keep putting their work out there.  

Persistence and tenacity.  Yeah, I can do that.  


7 comments:

Katie said...

You go girl! Retail therapy, some oreos and a little Kate DiCamillo is just what the doctor ordered.

I feel confident your babies will find a home somewhere soon :-)

Katie

P.S. Have you thought about getting stock in Michael Stars?

Disco Mermaids said...

Wow! Thanks for posting this, SF! Although, I'm sad for you, I'm also amazed and inspired by your ability to get "back on the horse" so quickly!

And also thank you for the KDC interview tip. Wow! Had no idea she "suffered" in the trenches like the rest of us. I'm motivated beyond belief now!

Miss you guys! :(

Eve

The Bill Cochran said...

Sorry to hear about the rejections. I don't know how you do it... But way to go. I was really, really thinking about hanging it up until I met you guys at SCBWI... And that's because of like one or 2 rejections... thanks!

The Bill Cochran said...

Sorry to hear about the rejections. I don't know how you do it... But way to go. I was really, really thinking about hanging it up until I met you guys at SCBWI... And that's because of like one or 2 rejections... thanks!

The Bill Cochran said...

sorry about the double (now triple) post.

Mimi Holland Lilly said...

S.F. Keep the letters for your board so that when you do your interviews later when your famous as all get out you can say you suffered too! It will happen and we will all be here to say when knew you when!
Mimi

Hardygirl said...

Ahhhh. Thanks for all your kind words.

Bill, don't you dare hang it up because of a couple of rejections. That's nothin'.

Jill Moore who is the manager at the best children's bookstore in the world Square Books, Jr. (here in Oxford) told me that Shannon Hale taped all of her rejection letter together and made a chain which she brought when she came to Oxford for a book signing. It reached out the door and around the parking lot.

Now, I'm not comparing myself with Shannon Hale or Kate diCamillo (I'm so not worthy), but it just shows what a total crap shoot this gig is.

And, Mimi, yes. I could give a great lecture on "suffering" for my art. Ha!

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