A few weeks ago, before the Summer of Slacktitude ended and I was insanely blinded by medical goo in my eyes, I had felt empowered enough to send out a few query letters to agents. I had this grand idea of sending a few out each week so that I wouldn’t feel overwhelmed with absolute failure in one swoop.
That idea lasted all of one day, equaling two agents that I had found on Writer’s Digest.
Weeks later, which was last Thursday, I was at work. I checked my email, read said email, saw I was rejected and went on with the rest of my day.
You guys it was the sweetest rejection email I’m like to receive. She was like, “We read your query, and I’m sure it will do really well with another agent. Unfortunately, we’re overloaded with projects at this time and cannot take anyone else on.”
Let’s face it, her it’s “us” not you didn’t fool me. It’s likely me, although, I was expecting something more like “You are unoriginal!” or “That is the worst query letter ever! Quit writing.”
Instead, what I got was an email that made me more encouraged to query other agents. And is it wrong that I feel as if this rejection secures my identity as an author? I ripped off a band-aid that was supposed to cause me a lot of pain, but all it really did was sting for two seconds. It didn’t really change how I identify as an author, nor did it curb my writing.
And plenty of the authorial greats have had to rip the same band-aid off. Over and over again. I’m in great company:
Madeleine L’Engle – rejected 26 times
J.K Rowling – rejected 12 times
William Golding- rejected 20 times
Even George Orwell’s Animal Farm was rejected. ANIMAL FARM!
You can see even more at Buzzfeed’s 20 Brilliant Authors Whose Work Was Initially Rejected
It made me realize that it’s time.
It’s time to break through the fear of rejection and seriously campaign for my story to be published. This is the moment where I prove that I believe in my Middle Grade Fiction piece and its right to be in the hands of as many readers as possible. I need to keep being tenacious and keep pushing until I finally get a YES.
I’m fired up!
My game plan for the next few weeks:
Writer’s Digest has compiled numerous agent databases as well as some added info on how to market yourself as a writer in a way that appeals to agents. These books seem like the next investment for an aspiring writer hoping to become published. I am going to query until Yahoo tells me I’ve sent too many emails in one day and need to take a break.
I am going to begin work on the sequel of Children of the Planes, simply because my kids want me to. Being published does not validate me as a writer; my readers do. If the only readers right now happen to be my little children spawn, then so be it!
There is also a conference coming up in Massachusetts for Society of Children Book Writers and Illustrators members where I will have the opportunity to get feedback from agents and editors about what they’re looking for. It sounds like a great opportunity to network and grow as a writer.
Thank you to everyone who has supported me so far. If I didn’t have as amazing of a network as I do, I’d like have quit after that first no.