The Full Rejection

As much as you convince yourself you are okay with rejection–actually expecting rejection–it still hurts when it comes.

I’ve had a full out with a dream agent for a month now. I have steeled myself for the worst, but, as is human nature, I fantasized about that agent requesting The Call. At the very least, I thought I would get some feedback so I could gain insight into how to improve.

And then, this morning, I got the email. Great premise, not enthusiastic enough, please think of us next time. Of course I’m grateful that I got the request in the first place and that someone took the time to read my manuscript, but I’m not going to lie and say it doesn’t hurt like hell. You never realize how high you’ve gotten your hopes up until it all comes crashing down.

I’m trying to keep it in perspective. I still have two fulls out right now, one with another dream agent. All it takes is one yes, and I know that. All of my requests have come from having sample pages with my query, which definitely gives me confidence about the writing, but I’m still worried that it will all fall through. I can rationalize all of this pretty well, but it’s pretty much impossible to be emotionally unattached to your work, you know? I want it to succeed. A rejection to a full request is not the end of the world, but it still sucks. I can rationalize that, too.

My hope for the other two fulls out is that I’ll receive feedback, although if it’s just not a right fit, what else can they say? Of course, my overarching hope is that I’ll be scheduling a call to talk to an agent and will take that next step, but that’s everyone’s hope. That’s the dream.

I won’t stop dreaming.

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Baby’s First Rejection

This morning I awoke to my first rejection, and you know what? It felt great. It’s hard to navigate through this process when most agencies adopt a “no reply means no” policy. That open-ended crap just serves to torment the writer. Did they get the query? Did they even read it? Should I send it again? Am I so terrible that they won’t even bother to respond?

I understand that it’s sometimes necessary for the agencies to conserve their resources and only reach out to potential clients whose projects sounds like a good fit, but it’s definitely not easy for the writer. I haven’t been waiting long on my queries, but I can imagine how I’ll feel in a month or two when the only emails I’ve gotten are automated confirmations of “yes, we got your query.” Being in the dark is difficult, especially when it’s something so personal and important to you.

I use QueryTracker to stay on top of the queries I’ve made (only seven thus far), and I find myself more drawn to agencies whose response times are quick, even if they reject almost all of the submissions. I’d rather be rejected and know it than sit and twiddle my thumbs for a few months. My impatience will be the death of me–I’m sure of it.

In other news, I’m hoping to start with a freelance editor sometime in the near future, so I will try to hold off querying until I’ve addressed editing the manuscript. That’s probably what I should have done in the first place, but OH WELL. Live and learn and then get Loves, right? (No one will get that reference because my brain is a circus.)

For the rest of the day I suppose I’ll organize potential agents into categories so it’s easier to make queries down the line. I am the least organized person, but when it comes to this, I just want to feel like I constantly have forward motion. I don’t want to waste time and get behind, or worse, become unmotivated. I assign myself busy work so I stay in check. Then I reward myself by playing Skyrim. Hey, it’s a good system, okay?

So, moral of the tangential story? Rejections are good because they mean you can cross one more dead end off of your list. Live to love that silver lining, baby.