Update: Handling Rejection

This morning I received yet another email from a literary agent unwilling to represent me and get Sunset Cove published. This marked the fifth rejection email I’ve received on the project.

This morning’s email was different, though. It wasn’t an automated response generated from an overbooked agent, nor was it a task assigned to a secretary giving the stereotypical “thanks, but no thanks” response. Instead, the agent emailed me directly, complimenting my story and the approach in telling it, while also providing me with some feedback and a genuine reason as to why he couldn’t represent me or my work.

Honesty is always appreciated, and it was so refreshing to have an agent take the time to read the query letter I wrote, accompanied with excerpts and other information (painstaking process to do individually per agent), and actually take me seriously as a twenty-one year-old aspiring author.

Rejection never gets easier, but it is a humbling part of the process. If anything, today’s rejection has rejuvenated my drive to perfect Sunset Cove and even managed to heighten my passion for a project I’ve poured my soul into. Some of the most successful, most popular books were ones to almost never see life on a bookshelf. As long as I don’t get too down on myself and don’t let these opportunities for improvement overwhelm me, it will work out.

Rejection isn’t a setback, but just additional time to make my work better. It’s a teaching moment and a tool I can utilize to grow mentally and as a person.

Sunset Cove will be published someday, and it will be a monumental achievement in my lifetime that will make these moments of rejection so worthwhile. I will never look back in anger for the agents and publishers that pass on me now, but will instead use their guidance to learn, grow, and find someone who can utilize my talent and my work to the best of their abilities.

Rejection isn’t failure, but a means by which we learn through disappointment.

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