Justine: Seeking Out Rejection to Overcome It

Are you sitting on your finished MS, dying-but-hating to send it out to the A-list of agents and editors you met at a recent conference? Perhaps you’ve signed up for a mentor program, but you’re anxious about putting your 60,000 word baby in the hands of someone else. Or, you found a great new critique partner, but you keep putting off sharing your chapters because “it’s just not quite right yet.”

You’ve got a rejection problem…or really, the fear of it.

Cue Jia Jiang, an entrepreneur and educator who formed an early association to rejection anxiety when he was six years old. Watch in this humorous TED talk as he explains how exposing himself to rejection for 100 days actually lessened the anxiety he felt about being rejected, and actually opened up opportunities he otherwise wouldn’t have had. It’s a lesson we can all learn from (although I don’t think I’ll be asking for “burger refills” at the local burger joint).

What is your worst rejection moment? Your best? What lessons can you share with writers who are afraid to put their work out there?

Elizabeth: R is for Rejection

ComparisonQuote_Blog2If you’re a writer and have ever attempted to get your work published then you probably have more than a passing acquaintance with rejection, in all its guises. As I mentioned in my “What Can You do in 100 Words” post a few weeks back I’m in the process of trying to get a few of my short stories out into the world, so rejection has been on my mind recently.

I heard thriller novelist Steve Berry, who has more than 11 million books in print around the world, speak a few years ago at a conference where he said that he worked for 12 years to produce a novel, accumulating 85 rejections on 5 different manuscripts along the way. That’s a lot of rejections, countered by a lot of perseverance to get to that 86th submission, which resulted in an acceptance. Continue reading