Monday, January 9, 2012

Looking For Rejection?

Last week, my agent tweeted that her blog had been found 64 times by people using the search word "rejection."

Now her blog is an incredible find. It's full of useful information for writers and readers. But, what I want to know is who on Earth is SEARCHING FOR REJECTION? My flip response to her tweet was, "Anyone looking for rejection will probably find it."

And it got me thinking. How many of us look for rejection? How many of us embrace rejection when we get it? How many of us walk away from our dream after one, two, three, twenty rejections? Rejection is a part of life. But so is acceptance, perseverance, and determination.

I once wrote a guest post on Literary Rambles about throwing in the towel, or rather not doing that. It's sort of the same thing, right? If I had given up a year ago, embraced the rejections I'd received, I wouldn't have queried Vickie--who signed me on March 1, 2011. If I give up now, I won't ever publish my fiction.

If you look for rejection, find it, and embrace it--you'll never realize your dream. I watched a special on the Smithsonian Channel on Saturday morning about L. Frank Baum. He went through many incarnations of his dream before hitting gold with the Wonderful Wizard of Oz. He faced rejection many times--but he pushed past it. And over 100 years later, his books still stand up.

Understand that sometimes you need to use your rejections to tweak your writing, but also tweak that dream. Maybe you're writing in the wrong genre, give something different a try. Maybe you're steadfastly pursuing traditional publishing when self-publishing should be your format (L. Frank Baum, by the way, self-published his first book at a time when it wasn't as easy as it is today.) Maybe you're holding out for a "dream" agent who's list is full when you should be querying newer agents hungry for promising talent.

Don't go looking for rejection, but if you find it--use it. Use it to improve your craft and make yourself stronger.

So, are you searching for rejection?

6 comments:

Ansha Kotyk said...

Kris, this is a wonderful, thoughtful and uplifting post. Because we always find what we're looking for. :)

Laura Pauling said...

Or maybe they were looking for encouragement by searching for rejection to see how others were dealing with it or to not feel so alone in the journey. Or how to interpret vague rejection letters. Did Vickie write a post on rejection letters or something like that?

Interesting.

Kristine Asselin said...

Thanks guys.

Laura, you're right. I'm sure that must have been it, but I wanted to point out that if you look for rejection and give up because of it, you will have self-fulfilled that negative prophecy. Sort of the difference between glass half full and glass half empty.

Vickie writes some great posts, and I'm sure she mentions rejection.

What I was trying to get at, though, is to encourage people not to stop at rejection because that's what they find during this process. It's part of the journey.

Alicia Gregoire said...

Great post, Kris. Of course, whenever I go into a job interview, part of me hopes for rejection just so I have extra time to revise during the day. ;)

deborahfreedman said...

Of course now, if a writer "looks for rejection", they will find this post... and it will help them move on!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Some people don't get enough rejection that they have to go searching for it on the Internet?