Just wondering if I'm the only one that has shed a few tears after receiving rejection letters. I feel like such an ass but it's so disheartening. I've had great responses from others that have critiqued it but is it always this hard to get an agent to even read a few chapters? I sit here and feel like just giving up sometimes! (Also, I wonder if I'll live long enough to even get any interest in it lol). I've written one book which I knew probably wouldn't have a lot of commercial interest but the second one I had high hopes and even have 2 sequels to it almost finished. One time I was this down and another person on this site gave me what I called a good kick in the ass and got me back writing but I don't want to be so much of a cry baby that I keep needing that 'push'! Am I alone in this kind of self-doubt?
A Question - is it just me?
Posted 07 February 2018 - 11:06 AM
I haven't cried, but it's definitely messed me up. Years ago, I sent a few (absolutely horrific) queries out for a manuscript that was just awful and had no hope in hell of ever being published. I knew this, but the thought of spending years working on something that's garbage got me down and I even stopped writing for a few years and couldn't figure out why.
I now have a much better manuscript, but still have those doubts. One thing that's helped soften the blow of getting rejections were sending out a ton of short stories to magazines, where 99% of the time it's a rejection. I know having a short story vs. a novel rejected are two different things, but it has helped numb me to the whole thing now.
Posted 07 February 2018 - 02:42 PM
I have learned at least one thing with this experience. Never send out queries when there are not-so-good things happening in your life. It just intensified it all for me. It is turning the experience into a 'divorce' moment for me too. I haven't even looked at my pens, binders or papers for 3 days now and certainly don't want to do that today either. As for the short story thing I'm not sure if I want to go that route. Trying to curb my spate of words to something short might be a little trying for me. lol. Ah me, I guess it's just going to take me a bit to go back to sending them out again. Thanks for the reply!
Posted 07 February 2018 - 03:27 PM
I certainly feel you not wanting to write when you aren't feeling well mentally! When I sent out my first queries years ago I was in a terrible head space, which only intensified the feelings of self-doubt.
And by the short story thing - I meant I already had short stories from years ago just sitting on my computer unread, so it took little effort to submit them to online magazines. I definitely don't think I have it in me to start writing short stories again either at this point
Posted 07 February 2018 - 03:41 PM
We're all in such an odd space mentally, when you think about it. We have to look at this whole process with reasonable expectations and therefore not get ourselves too hyped up, as what we are doing is incredibly difficult, but at the same time, we wouldn't be here if some part of us didn't truly believe that we can get this done. So it's a strange dichotomy of self doubt and self belief.
Personally, I haven't cried yet. I think that while part of me was hoping that my query and my book would be that amazing that agents would just be lining up to offer reps, the rational part of me knew that this process comes with a lot of rejections, so when I got my first rejection, I was disappointed but maybe more prepared than I thought I was. I think I was also helped that the second response I got was a request, so that's buoyed me along since then. But since that first request, I've gotten a mostly lot of nos or cricket noise, and it's tough. The toughest was probably a couple days ago when I got a rejection after getting a partial request (the only other request I've gotten). That one's tougher, because I think I had convinced myself that my book was awesome enough that if I just got an agent to start reading, they would definitely want to offer. We'll see how things go with that first request, but when I finally hear back hopefully within the next month, if it's a rejection, then I probably will find a few tears being shed.
So, it's not just you. A lot of us will react in different ways, but the rejections piling up does take a toll. However, you should never feel ashamed about coming to this site for support. We're all in the same boat, and we all get it. If you just need to unload some feelings to a group who understand the emotions, you can do that. If you need that kick in the butt, just ask for it. We get it. We're here.
Posted 07 February 2018 - 04:32 PM
I've been querying for ten years and have about 460 rejections over a span of 3 books, but I'm writing a fourth book, continue querying, keep going. The average length of time to get your first book traditionally published is ten years, and your first book published is not usually your first book written.
It's true that writing short stories can help. Although I've failed to snag an agent, I have published multiple stories, and that makes me feel like less of a failure. Some magazines have 99% rejection rates, but others are more likely to accept.
I was just reading a multi-published author bio, and she said that she queried for ten years before she got an offer.
The moral of the story is be persistent, try not to let it get it to you (OK, it gets to me quite a bit). You must be persistent and keep writing, and don't think you're the only one.
Posted 08 February 2018 - 09:27 PM
I want to thank everyone that replied here. It did me a lot of good to see the things said. It was a hard time for me to open up my email and see the rejections sitting in there. My daughter is in the ICU and it's been a trying time for me anyhow so it was just those piled on top and it all hit me. I have put my sequel to the side for now. (Not really worried since it's around 3/4 done and the next part is about 1/2 way done.) So I will keep sending out the queries and hope someone finally wants to read it lol. (Think maybe I'll take a glass of wine before looking at my email from now on.)
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