Get back on the horse

Yes, getting a rejection is disappointing, but I’ve worked through it. I’ve done more research to find a new place to send my rejected stories once they have been rewritten. I have also sent the story and the guidelines to another writer to review and give me some feedback as to why my story wasn’t a fit for the magazine. It will be interesting to see the comments for that. Too bad I can’t get that from the magazine directly. Ah well, such is the industry.

As I work in my other job, I also continue to find time to write. Since l last wrote, I have written 2 devotionals, rewritten a non fiction story for children and have a first draft for a comfort food story. I have also critiqued stories for two other writers. I am also writing on another blog where I am doing a play by play of my reading and acting on a book on writing for the children’s market.

So I keep working to compete and to win results!

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Get back on the horse

Yes, getting a rejection is disappointing, but I’ve worked through it. I’ve done more research to find a new place to send my rejected stories once they have been rewritten. I have also sent the story and the guidelines to another writer to review and give me some feedback as to why my story wasn’t a fit for the magazine. It will be interesting to see the comments for that. Too bad I can’t get that from the magazine directly. Ah well, such is the industry.

As I work in my other job, I also continue to find time to write. Since l last wrote, I have written 2 devotionals, rewritten a non fiction story for children and have a first draft for a comfort food story. I have also critiqued stories for two other writers. I am also writing on another blog where I am doing a play by play of my reading and acting on a book on writing for the children’s market.

So I keep working to compete and to win results!

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Getting the Rejection

It came in the mail today – the envelope typewritten with my name and address and the return address with the publication name. I recognized it right away as I had typed it that way. This was a response to one of my stories. It came in the form of a 10 point checklist as to why the story was not accepted. It was personalized with the title of my story, one item checked off and the editorial assistant signature. Nothing more. It did not even include the return of my story.

The letter also noted that they only pick up 4-6 manuscripts a year and receive up to 75 each month. I guess that gives me some solace as others are probably experiencing the same feeling of rejection. I would have loved to get more feedback to see what I could improve, but that is not how the market works.

I still believe the piece has value, but it is a niche piece. I will need to do some more research to see what other potential markets are out there for this story. In the meantime, I will keep writing. This doesn’t make me any less a writer. It is just giving me more experience which in turn will result in positive results.

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Another Side of Rejection

At my last writers’ group meeting, one of our speakers read a piece about rejection. It was a response to a rejection that the writer received.  I didn’t take notes, but I had examples at home at home to use. Now I will share my example with you.

Here is a response you might want to send next time you receive a rejection letter…

Dear Editor,

Thank you so much for giving me the opportunity to consider your rejection. Unfortunately, the volume of unsolicited rejections has become so overwhelming that I find I can no longer devote the necessary time to each one. Therefore, I have decided not to accept any rejections unless they have been channeled through a literary agent who knows my writing needs.

I wish you much success in placing your rejection elsewhere.

The Writer

This is a re-write of a form response I received from a national magazine. In reviewing their form letter, which has been sent to countless individuals, I noticed two spelling errors and one grammar error. I guess they didn’t have the time to proofread their letters either!

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Dealing with Rejection

A story of mine was rejected today. I didn’t get a personal rejection but rather the winning finalists in the writing contest were posted and my name wasn’t on the list. Just in case I re-read the list to make sure they didn’t accept my story by title and accidentally put the wrong author’s name on it. No luck there either. Hope springs eternal for the hopeless optimist which I am.

I think I would rather get a personal rejection. Then I would feel that someone actually held a copy of my story in their hand and at least perused it before using it as a coaster for their coffee cup. So many magazines and book publishers these days have a no response reply to submissions. If they don’t like it, you won’t hear from them.  But maybe they do?

I heard a story from a writer last week who told of a publisher to whom he had submitted a story two years ago. As he had no reply, he sent it out to other sources and one of them did accept it.  Then he finally heard from the first publisher who wanted to buy the first rights to his story. However, since he had now been published elsewhere it was no longer an unpublished piece and that no longer fit their guidelines.

So do you hold your breathe and wait eternally like sleeping beauty for a response? I think not. Rewrite and resend. That is what I am going to do with the story that was rejected. I already have some ideas on how to re-craft it. I am a bit let down, but also excited as I don’t have a new story to write from scratch. It’s like having a basic black dress that I can now dress up and embellish. We’ll see if my next date (or editor) finds it more to their liking.

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Once Upon a Writer’s Dream

Once upon a time in a faraway land, there lived a writer of words known as a journalist who told the news. He wanted more than that, he wanted to write fiction. This thinker of a man did succeed in achieving his dream of writing a novel. It even gained regional popularity. Alas, he did not gain world fame as he had hoped. His country was one in the northern climes and he wrote in a language that was unknown to many.

Then came a brave knight to rescue this book from its lesser fame. This barely known crusader bought the rights to this book. Then the magic began. The title’s name, “Men Who Hate Women” was changed and given a more mystical feel like that of a dragon.

He and his fellow knights of Quercus traveled far and wide letting people know of this book and their incantations worked their magic even as far as Hollywood where the book was sold. Thus ends the tale so far of “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.”

If you would like to read the complete tale of how this book achieved world-wide acclaim, click here.

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A Child’s Reading

I have been an avid reader all my life, but I am not one to hold on to books. I usually donate my books, once read, to my local library. For me to keep a book means it holds a place in my heart. That is the case with some of the books in my photo.

One of my favorite books is “A Child’s Garden of Verses” by Robert Louis Stevenson. I actually have two copies of this book. My mother gave one to me when I moved out on my own. This book had a lot of meaning to me as she read it to me many times when I was a child. Then I went on to read it for myself. This was a new copy, as the one she read to me as a child had disappeared.

When my parents unpacked after their next move it somehow showed up again. Now I had in my possession the actual one I read as a child.  This was very special as I was not the only child to cherish that book. Another had read it many years before me. This book had an inscription lovingly written by my grandmother who had given it to my mother as one of her first books.

The verses may seem simplistic by today’s standards but they still are precious to me. Here are a few from one of the poems in the book…

We may see how all things are,

Seas and cities, near and far,

And the flying fairies’ looks,

In the picture storybooks.

If you are unfamiliar with his works, here is a link to learn more about him, his life, and his works.

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I am a Writer

I do a lot of reading and research and at times, I feel I am a hamster on a spinning wheel. I want results and I want them now. That’s when I remember a favorite phrase that keeps me going, “Do the footwork and stay out of the results.”

This reminds me to do my part, keep at it, and let the results take care of themselves. This ties in nicely to an article I read in Writer’s Digest. Here is a short blurb from it that really caught my attention.

Take yourself seriously – Many beginning writers feel guilty about working so hard at something for which they haven’t been paid a cent. Immediate family members or friends may look on writing as a harmless little hobby, to be encouraged only when it doesn’t interfere with their own lives…You must emphatically demonstrate to yourself and to others that writing is a part of who you are, not just an amusing pastime. The measure of being a writer is not how much money you make, but how important writing is in your life.

This is part of the article entitled, The 10 Commandments of Fiction Writing. If you’d like to learn more, click here.

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Anticipation

I’ve had a busy last two weeks. I’ve sent out 2 stories, entered 2 contests and done the first and second draft of a picture book. Now the waiting comes in.  I can’t just sit back and wait for something to happen. It’s time for the next follow through. I have to do the research as to which publisher will be the best fit for my picture book. Unlike clothes, one size doesn’t fit all (and those one size clothes really don’t fit everyone). So it’s time to hit the bookstores and libraries to find publishers that fit my style. There are a ton of publishers out there!

However, if my first choice of publishers doesn’t agree with me, I can’t give up. I have to keep trying to find the right fit. Here’s a link to a piece about the importance of keeping your work circulating by Evelyn B. Christensen who is an award winning children’s author.

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A Child’s Dream

Who doesn’t dream about being famous? When I was a child of 10 I already dreamed of being a famous writer. My best friend told me she would hold on to my letters as she expected me to be famous someday and she could sell them and make a lot of money. I am not close to being a famous name but it doesn’t mean I don’t have a passion for the writing I do.

I really love writing for children. When I’m in a classroom or in the library I always like to chat with children to find out who they like to read and what makes it interesting for them. I feel alive when I am around children and sharing the love of reading like I have. I always cheer on kids when I see them walk out of the library with a stack of books!

Here’s a blog from another writer on the lure of writing that I enjoyed reading…

Kathryn Lay writer: Living the Dream: “When I first started my writing career back in 1991, I dreamed of someday being famous. I dreamed of piles of fan mail from kids everywhere …”

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