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Tiaga
09-18-2005, 01:15 AM
Most all writers receive rejections. But what is being rejected?
A query or synopsis, a partial or full manuscript. It is obviously easier to handle
a quick rejection of a query letter than a rejection of a partial or worse a full MS after months of correspondence.
It seems to me that we have to keep this in perspective. Complaining of rejection after submitting a few queries is pointless.
Rejection in writing is like rejection in Hollywood, part of the business. No actor of any merit simply shows up in Hollywood and expects to be the next Al Pacino and it is no different for writers. Its a long hard apprenticeship.
I've had my share of rejection in all categories and it's taught me that we need to persevere, remain confident and that writers all need to have tough skin to succeed.

triceretops
09-19-2005, 05:43 AM
After you receive about 300 of them over a dozen years it gets easier to bear the pain. I've become thick-skinned and numb, and consider it perfectly normal. I've had some major successes, so it has all been worth the trial and work. You get less of them as time goes on. But it does take time and market savvy to swing those deals.

Tri

lrs
09-19-2005, 06:58 AM
The question is, when do you give up the idea of ever making money on writing. I mean actually making it a career? Of course I just might be depressed right now because of rejections, but sometimes I wonder if maybe I am deluding myself. Which, I'm sure everyone has felt. But seriously, how do you know if this is really what you are supposed to be doing?

Tiaga
09-19-2005, 08:07 AM
The question is, when do you give up the idea of ever making money on writing. I mean actually making it a career? Of course I just might be depressed right now because of rejections, but sometimes I wonder if maybe I am deluding myself. Which, I'm sure everyone has felt. But seriously, how do you know if this is really what you are supposed to be doing?

How long have you been writing? How determined are you in your efforts to be published? Most importantly review your work refine and rewrite if necessary.
Set your work aside and start a new manuscript.
This is not an easy career if in fact you want it to be a career. Many writers write because they feel the need, publication not money drives them. Making a living a real living from writing is difficult. To use the Hollywood metaphor again hundreds of actors act, few are stars.
Even stars have to re-evaluate their careers. Lindsay Wagner was a top T.V. star and now sells mattresses and beds on infomercials.
Perseverance is the best I can offer. Learn your craft and keep pushing!

blacbird
09-19-2005, 09:03 AM
After you receive about 300 of them over a dozen years it gets easier to bear the pain. I've become thick-skinned and numb, and consider it perfectly normal. I've had some major successes, so it has all been worth the trial and work. You get less of them as time goes on. But it does take time and market savvy to swing those deals.

Tri

"Some major successes", there's the trick, isn't it? It's having some success that makes the rejections easier to deal with, not just the sheer number of rejections. Trust me, if you accumulate an enormous pile of rejections over a long time, in unending succession, with NO acceptances. The next one is just that much more depressing than the previous one was.

bird

Jamesaritchie
09-19-2005, 06:41 PM
The question is, when do you give up the idea of ever making money on writing. I mean actually making it a career? Of course I just might be depressed right now because of rejections, but sometimes I wonder if maybe I am deluding myself. Which, I'm sure everyone has felt. But seriously, how do you know if this is really what you are supposed to be doing?

I think the answer to this is easy. Give up whenever you want. I'm not sure I believe we're supposed to be doing any one thing, but I do know more people fail not because they lack intelligence and talent, but because they apply that intelligence and talent to the wrong things.

I know from personal experience that not everyone can succeed at everything, and desire alone isn't enough. There's always room at the top in the writing world, but it really is an inverted pyramid, and there's darned little room at the bottom.

Honest, brutal assessment of yourself and your abilities is important in every area of life. I do believe we each have a niche where we'll perform as well as anyone, but finding the right niche can be more than a little problematic. It's the old "square peg in a round hole" deal. Desire is important, but no matter how much we want something, square pegs do not fit well into round holes.

I've heard a few pro writers talk about when to quit. It varies with how prolific you are, of course, but I've heard several say that five years is probably the mark. You don't have to get rich and famous within five years, but if you've been submitting regularly for five years without selling something, odds are you are never going to make a career from writing.

This seems reasonable to me.

My own criteria, however, has nothing to do with time. Living life in a state of frustration and/or depression is not a good thing. When writing, or anything else, ceases to be the most fun you can have without a partner, I think it's time to look for something else to fill your hours.

There's nothing wrong with the dream of having writing, or painting, or music, or playing pro football, as a career, but life is short, incredibly short, and one day you wake up old and gray and realize it's nearly over. I'm not sure anything could be worse than looking back and realizing an untried dream has passed by the wayside, that your niche was there and you didn't squeeze into it.

I am not, in any way, telling you to quit. I'm simply saying there's no shame in giving up one dream to find another. I wouldn't be a writer if I hadn't done exactly this.

But it's also about how you want to spend your life. If writing is the most fun you can have, if getting up and wushing to the keyboard each day is still thrilling, whether you sell or not, then giving up would probably be silly. If, however, the writing life is filled with frustration and depression, then it might be time to look for another niche.