More Fun With Rejections

I’ve become very intimately familiar with one moment in the query/rejection cycle. It’s the moment where I see that I have a response to my query and try not to get excited when I open it, or crushed when I see that it’s a rejection.

I can describe it pretty faithfully at this point. There is an initial surge of adrenaline, followed by the faint disappointment and relief that this time it seems to hurt less, like I’ve actually gotten inured to this over the course of however many scores of these I’ve gone through. But then about a second later, my skin starts to tingle. And I have dread at that point, not because anything is wrong yet, but because I know it will be. About five seconds later, depression will punch me in the stomach so hard that I’ll probably be nauseated for the rest of the night.

And then it’s time to deal with it. It’s actually a lot like dealing with period pain: yes, it really hurts quite a lot, and I have to just acknowledge that and keep breathing and walk through it.

I never talk about this as it’s happening. No one ever just says, “Wow, that really sucks, want a hug?” There is always some sort of positive-sounding platitude to try to console me with. See examples. But I’m not ready for positive thinking yet. It actively makes me angry. So I’ve learned to do this on my own.

Tomorrow, I’ll pick myself up, dust myself off, and keep going. But today, I just need a few moment to feel how badly this sucks.

Rejections Suck, But You Can Help

Rejections suck. They really, really suck. You would think that after you rejections have long-since stopped climbing into the double-digits that they would suck less, and you would think wrong.

But there are some things that make them suck less. So if you see me post on social media about a recent rejection that stung, or talk to me about it in a coffee shop, I have provided this handy guide to what helps when engaging me about rejections.

Things that help:

  • a good hug or cuddle
  • having my feelings that it sucks be acknowledged
  • probably just letting me playing video games for a day or two, including letting me out of social engagements guilt-free
  • being told that my writing is good, especially how I nailed [aspect]
  • being asked if there’s anything they can do to help (there isn’t, but the sentiment is really sweet)

Things that I find less-than-helpful:

  • being told that all writers get rejections (I know)
  • being told that [famous writer here] got lots of rejections (I Know)
  • being told that I just need to keep at it (I KNOW)

Thanks, all! With your unstanding and support I’ll be better able to just keep at it until I have as many rejections as [famous author] because all writers get rejections.