There’s Something About…

rejection.

Ironic that yesterday was about putting yourself out there. Mmm, kismet.

I got home from work at about 3:30 in the morning last night to find an addressed envelope in my own hand writing sitting next to my husband. The name on it was my top choice agent. It contained my second rejection.

*Runs around in circles*

It was a form rejection of about two lines total. This agent has a “very full client list” and can only take on projects that are a “perfect fit.” Fair enough.

Something about being rejected by this particular agent feels somewhat liberating.

"What didju say?!" This guy came over from thisisphotobomb.com to see all the commotion.

Yeah, yeah, you heard me right. I said liberating.

Am I rationalizing and trying to punt disappointment into the endzone like Ahmad Bradshaw‘s butt? Yes. But it’s also more or less true.

Finding an agent is like dating, and a good relationship with your agent is like a marriage.

I remember high school. After ping-ponging back and forth through different elementary schools, I landed in rural Montana. From sixth grade through the first half of my junior year, I went to school in a tiny town twenty miles south of Missoula. I had a couple fruitless crushes in those early years there, but when high school rolled around, I got my first major crush on a boy who, till that point, had contented himself with throwing snowballs at me and chewing on any object I left sitting within reach in our science class. I think I still have the plastic Winnie-the-Pooh toy with deformed ears.

(Thanks, doofus. <3)

I nursed this crush for over a year until I invited him to go to homecoming with me, and he said yes.

Okay, so he didn't exactly agree like that. But....but...raccoon! Cute! Cheezburger!

Except it was just platonic. The dance was all there was, and I still have our pictures somewhere. I ended up a wee bit heartbroken.

If you look in the dictionary under “late bloomer,” you’ll find my 2nd grade school picture, complete with missing front teeth and my chin pulled double in a maniacal grin. If I had it, I would share it with you for the lolz. I went through several years of rejection in dating — there were plenty before my homecoming date, and there were plenty after.

What I needed was the right fit. If I’d somehow married the first boy I had a crush on back in preschool, it most likely would have turned into a complete and utter disaster.

Yep. Something like that.

So while this agent was the first crush I had in the agent world, getting rejected by her allows me to explore options that might be better for me. Might make a better marriage.

And you never know what can happen from rejection, gentle viewers. That homecoming date went on to become the start of one of my longest friendships — he’s even one of the two people I went to high school with to have met my husband. He ended up taking me to prom senior year after I changed schools, and we’ve stayed in touch for over ten years.

Not that I’m going to be BFFs with this agent, but no bridges got set alight, so the future is full of possibility.

Time to get querying.

How have rejections spurred you onward? Have you ever desired something that turned out not to be your best option? Let’s paddle the rejection pool today!

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About Emmie Mears

Saving the world from brooding, one self-actualized vampire at a time.

Posted on February 19, 2012, in Sunday My Prints Will Come, writing business and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 14 Comments.

  1. Emmie, I love your view of the world. You’re so right–I think NOT hearing is even worse than a form rejection, simply because it puts you into limbo land. I HATE limbo land more than I hate rejection land. LOL. πŸ˜€ Now you’re free to move on and pick out some other good fits for you! The world, my friend, is your oyster.

    • Thank you, Adriana! Your comment made me smile. πŸ™‚

      I’m going to get to the books tomorrow and make a big long list…and send out a bunch of queries this week.

  2. Remember the saying: “Rejection is God’s protection.” Good words to live by, no matter in what area the rejection lies.

    Good luck with future queries!

  3. excellent way to view this. Getting someone to publish you is hard and you seem to have the perseverance to get there. I think that is why so many go to self publish. Good luck. You are right…you need a good relationship with an agent for it to work like you want.

  4. Trish Loye Elliott

    I’m heading into query land soon. I like your attitude. I’m going to remember this post as I wait for replies. Great post, Emmie.

  5. I used to post my rejection letters, but then I was told that was bad form, so I stopped. But it felt good to publicly trash myself – at the time.

    Now, after receiving sooooo many of them, I see everyone’s point. Just move on – as you are doing. πŸ™‚

  6. It sucks getting form rejection letters; all you can do is put them aside and keep querying. All you need is one Yes!

  7. That’s the right attitude, Emmie … keep movin’ on! It’s their loss, not yours, and the right fit is out there waiting. These days there are often times when we women just get out on the dance floor and boogie on our own. No prom date required!

  8. I agree with what’s already been said above: you seem to have a good outlook and the optimistic spirit needed to persevere in the writing world. Thanks for sharing your positive attitude. It is a good reminder to us all to keep on keepin’ on so we can find the right fit for ourselves in all that we do.

  9. I haven’t queried with my novel yet, but have had the first for a short story. Take on board comments and keep your chin up. I like your attitude so keep being positive. Great photos as well, love the cat one πŸ™‚

  10. I’m sorry for the sting you’re feeling, but glad you’re moving forward!

  11. You’re going forward with the best attitude a writer can take. The road to successes like Stephen King, J. K. Rowling, and almost every other “famous” author is paved with rejection after rejection. Someday that agent might wish she hadn’t been so busy when you queried her. And you’ll be happily celebrating the latest success over coffee (or hey, dinner at a 5-star restaurant) with the agent who was the right one for you.

    • Mmm…dinner. πŸ™‚

      Thanks for the comment — I am sure my positive attitude will take some bangs along the way as the rejection total rises into the double (maybe even triple) digits, but I have to believe something will happen. πŸ™‚

  12. Oh, Emmie. Your unwavering sense of positive thinking, and you ability to bring forth humor even at points many people (and especially writers in this case) would spend slightly foaming at the mouth, is just so wonderfully admirable. It’s a sting on the road to publication, but if anyone deserves to get there, it’s your delightful self. Keep pushing!

    As for rejections and not the best options…the majority of my experience in that department is mostly just in the dating/women department so…I’ll just nod and say yes, and note that truth applies to so many areas of life.

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