I got a rejection email yesterday. The second one this week. I know there are authors who save their rejection letters, pinning them to cork board with pride as evidence they are working, creating and determined but I am not one of those people. While I do see the value chronicling your efforts, I know for myself, I’m too sensitive to have that constant reminder hanging, along with my head.
This was a big one. The Nicollet Mall Lantern Project. I really wanted this one. This sucks, I’m obviously not good enough, maybe I should quit. These are some of the thoughts I had as I was reading the standard “thanks but no thanks” form letter that was in my inbox.
Why didn’t I submit something better? Because I didn’t have anything better, I sent my best.
It was some heavy subject matter. Why couldn’t I just have written something new and happy? Fluffy clouds and double rainbows n shit?
Because we write what we know.
I haven’t had a life filled with kittens and candy… bad example, have had seven cats and am a diabetic but you get the idea.
I can’t write from experiences I didn’t have.
Not that my life has been a terrible, awful, no good, very bad day, but I do suffer with depression. It makes it harder to find and see the light, which is literally what the Lantern Project is about. Who appreciates the light more than someone who has spent their life in darkness? Maybe I was focusing too much on the build up and getting to the light vs actual light and happiness. Who knows.
Instead of looking at this rejection as a failure, I’m choosing instead to see it for the light that it is. I can recognize that this is a step in my process and I’m not done growing. Not as a person, not as a writer. I don’t have to be crippled by rejection and self-doubt. I can see that I have more to look forward to and I will have that much more joy when I do get an acceptance, provided I keep working on my craft.
In the meantime, I am killing it in several other areas: