In a previous post, I discussed acceptance letters and some good news. 🙂
Today is not that day. 😈
Not all rejection letters are equal. Nor should they serve the same purpose for writers. It has been quipped that authors could wallpaper their homes with rejection letters. Let us instead utilize these often painful responses to help us pave the way to success. How?
We must focus on the letters that are edged with a silver lining.
What exactly is a silver lining?
Oh, hello there, Merriam-Webster Dictionary Entry. You have something to share? Great! Have at it:
According to Writers Relief’s Medium wonderfully informative post, there are four different types of rejection letters:
- The Form Letter
- The Personal Rejection Letter
- The Invitation to Resubmit
- The Glowing Rejection
Overall, that post not only identifies these types, but also provides ways to classify them and it suggests strategies on how to polish your work accordingly before you resubmit elsewhere or anywhere.
For the purpose of this post, we will focus on the last three which I call “Silver Lining Rejections” because they offer comfort and hope in an otherwise unhappy situation that can be advantageous and beneficial to you.
The Personal Rejection Letter
Here is an example:
I did ask if I was able to resubmit the piece after revising the issues they pointed out, but that wasn’t the plan. 🙂 However, it was nice that they mentioned wanting to see more stories in the future from mwen, which brings us to . . . 🙂
The Invitation to Resubmit
The Glowing Rejection
Here is an example:
Several weeks ago, I lamented over the phone about my latest rejection letter to one of my dearest friends and fellow author, E. Rose Sabin (learn more about her here). She responded, “That rejection letter is what writers call a ‘good’ rejection. That means that while they didn’t take the story, they liked it enough to write a note explaining why they weren’t taking it and encouraging you to keep trying elsewhere” and “I’ve posted at various times about the very helpful rejection letter I got for a story titled “The Last Gift” that led to my writing A School for Sorcery, in which that story became the last chapter of the novel. In your case the letter tells you that the story came close to being accepted, and while it wasn’t, they invited you to submit other stories in the future.”
Did her words of wisdom cheer me up?
Am I still saddened that I can’t sell this story yet (that little word yet is mighty significant when it comes to mindsets, you got to, got to, got to STAY POSITIVE with GROWTH!)?
But you know something else? I will keep trying. On my desktop, I created a folder called “The Story Clinic” where I store stories that need a little TLC (Tender Loving Care) and oftentimes I’ll listen to some TLC whilst I clickety-click-clack on my keyboard to coax words onto the screen or paper.
When I first add these stories to said folder, I refuse to read them or even look at them for at least a week. Think of it like a sabbatical spa treatment of solitude for these poor, little literary darlings! And me? I do other things.
And there’s lots of things to do during a pandemic, while you’re on an unpaid leave of absence because the job you sacrificed so much for, for nearly two bloody decades, acts like one of those more-evil-than-the-Devil husbands in a Lifetime movie, and doesn’t give you any other options other than YOU sacrificing not only your life, but also the lives of your elderly parents, your children, and your spouse because said employer refused to tell you and other people you work with that there were POSITIVE COVID cases in your classroom and that when you questioned why you were NOT told, they responded that you DIDN’T NEED TO KNOW–WHAAAAAAT?!
Wait. What’s that? Oh, I see. 😯 I’m not seeing the silver lining. Wait a minute! You’re right! Perhaps, there’s a silver lining to this precarious and unfortunate situation! Perhaps God is trying to tell me something? 🙂
Okay, soooooo back to business! Each and every soul-stinging time you receive a rejection letter, look for the silver lining and rainbows may appear. Then chase those rainbows to pots of golden goodness! Or something like that. 🙂
Happy Writing and Submitting!