I received my first rejection yesterday. Okay…technically it wasn’t my first. I had submitted an earlier rendition of my novel a whole seven times in the past and they were also soundly rejected.
I was also rejected by The New Yorker (hey, a girl can dream, right?).
I was expecting the rejection. Didn’t want it but ready for it. To be a published writer means to experience rejection. And one of my favorite poets, Bob Okaji, writes to me about nearly daily experiences with rejection.
By the way, if you are reading this, then go to Amazon and buy Indra’s Net. Trust me…it’s completely and beautifully worth it. If anything, buy it for someone you love and let them know you love them because you bought them this book of poetry.
Okay…back to topic of discussion.
I’ve started sending out the novel. And by starting I submitted to one agent. Woot!
And I was rejected by that one agent.
I’m such a novice writer and editor. I can edit the hell out of a student’s essay but struggle with my own writing. I have had fabulous editing groups and have a new partner who is AMAZING!. But I’m still a novice and will make novice mistakes.
Regardless, I’m not giving up.
Yesterday, I posted on Facebook about the rejection. I have had at least 70 people respond to my post and that doesn’t include the comments, for which I am powerfully grateful. I will admit, my feelings were a little stung (really, just a tiny bit). I went back and re-read a couple of my first pages. I sent the novel on to a former student who is in New York City and being an amazing person with Simon and Schuster.
I am still dreaming.
Literally. I really am. I dreamt last night about an agent who liked my writing so much she wanted me to pay her $78,000 to publish my novel.
Thankfully, that was just a dream.
Today, I received several hugs. I have had people reassure me and encourage me and inspire me to put my fingers to keyboard and just write.
I love my husband’s response. He never said, “I’m sorry.” He said something along the lines of “that’s okay. You have 99 more chances.”
I will query 100 agents. If I can hike a hundred miles on the Appalachian Trail, 97 of which with two sprained ankles, I can query 100 agents fearlessly. After that, I will put Polishing the Bones on the backburner. I think I will find an agent. I think I have something. I just need to make that connection and show that I am the writer someone wants to represent.
Tonight, I am going to write a 1,000 words into my second novel, Becoming Lazarus.
I have already started plotting out my third, The Whisper Network.
I will not be defeated.
By the way, by the end of next week, I will send out query number 2. And I will wait for the probable rejection because I just can’t see myself being accepted with the second agent.
But maybe…just maybe….