Nobody likes that feeling. But it is a huge test of your determination as a writer and/or composer. I’ve sent in music to a publishing company before and it got (nicely) rejected, and just now I received a rejection letter from an agent. Hearing back in the same day as a first-time writer, I thought it was probably an “I don’t have time for inexperienced writers, go somewhere else” rejection letter, and in a way it kinda was–but at least, again, she was nice about it.
What do you do when you get a rejection? And this isn’t only for writers. In life, we face all kinds of rejection. Sometimes from family, sometimes from friends (and crushes), and sometimes from complete strangers. When is it acceptable to quit?
Well, in the realm of publishing, at least, the concensus seems to be “when you die.”
Did you know that “Chicken Soup for the Soul,” a multi-million dollar franchise, was rejected 140 times before it was finally picked up?? “Gone With the Wind” was rejected 38 times. “Harry Potter and the Sorceror’s Stone” was also rejected multiple times.
My new mantra is “never give up.” Rejection just means there was something in my story that did not agree with the agent’s personality or belief system. Okay, so I won’t bother her with it again. But as she told me in her letter, publishing is a subjective business. She didn’t believe in my story, so she didn’t waste both of our time and dollars trying to promote something she didn’t like, and I can respect that.
It’s the same way in life. If one relationship or friendship doesn’t work, another one will. Rejection from family is tough, but there’s usually someone else to fall back on, and sometimes you don’t even know they’re there until you need them. And if strangers reject you, who cares? You don’t know them anyway.
Never. Give. Up.
There’s always a new direction to be taken, all you gotta do is decide if there’s one to be found or if you have to make one.