Rejection horrible

Sorry to hear of your rejection.  Well, of course that’s to be expected.  Rejection is not failure, it’s just what all writers go through at the beginning.  You get rejected, or worse, you get no answer, which is the same as rejection.

Don’t hang on, thinking “Oh they might still get back to me”.  If they haven’t responded and if further contact from you still produces no response, accept the reality: you’ve been rejected.

You now know the terrible feeling of rejection.  Rejection is horrible.  I’ve suffered it.  Only recently I had what I thought was a perfect article for a major publication rejected for the second time.  It hurt, and I’ve been successfully writing for a living since 1961.  All journalists and other writers must suffer rejection.  It’s part of what we go through.  And I’ve done it to others.  As an editor I have rejected articles that people have toiled away at with talent and enthusiasm, only to have the work they are so proud of rejected by me and their hopes dashed.

An editor has to be selective, otherwise he’s not doing his job.  The journalist cares about the quality of one story, where the editor has to care about the consistent quality, image and story mix of a whole edition.

Often rejection is due to timing . . . last week the editor would have accepted your work, this week other matters are on the go and this week your particular article isn’t needed.  It’s cruel, but that’s life.

What I think can never be forgiven is rudeness: simply ignoring your article when you have sent a stamped, self-addressed envelope for its return.  That’s sheer thoughtlessness.  I remember once getting an honest but dumbfounding rejection.  I asked a famous editor, the late John Douglas Pringle, why he had rejected an article of mine when he had accepted so many others of mine.  He said “I could give you a whole lot of nonsense Simon, but I’ll tell you the truth.  I just don’t like it.  I don’t know why I don’t like it, but I don’t and so I’m rejecting it.”  I had no comeback to that!!

So what do you do in the face of rejection?  You must re-read the last two editions of your target publication.  Re-read a copy of the article you sent.  Now, YOU work out why it was rejected.  Think like an editor.  Why isn’t your article right?  Turn disappointment into a lesson for yourself.  Turn rejection into something positive.

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