Rejection Blues and Snapping Out of It

I hate e-mail rejection letters.

Last week I got a rejection letter from Writer’s Digest.  As rejection letters go, it was pretty upbeat, but it still hit me hard.

Why is that sometimes the case?

Obviously, we cope less well when we are hungry or tired or really stressed.  We just don’t bounce back as well under those circumstances.

This time around, I had another unique problem.  I’m on the verge of meeting the last of my deadlines.  Come the Saturday conference, I will have nothing due by X date.  Yes, this happens every now and again and I always end up with more work.  But I also go through an unspecified period of writerly angst.  Sometimes its a day.  Sometimes its an hour.  “What if no one else wants me to write for them?”  Ridiculous, yes. But it happens each and every time.

And right into the middle of this angst plopped a rejection letter.

Fortunately, something happened to help me snap out of it.  After I closed the message from the Writer’s Digest editor, I spied a message from another editor three messages farther down in the queue.  “What is this?  Clean off your desk and reject Sue day?”  Yeah, I was totally upbeat.

I clicked on the second message and discovered not another rejection but an acceptance.  I had submitted 12 pieces for a Gryphon House anthology.  They are using 10.  Whew!  What a relief.

No, you can’t always count on an acceptance letter to follow each and every rejection and help you snap out of it.

But you can do something for yourself.  I’ve blogged about this in the past, but I keep a rejection jar. In it are slips of paper.  On each slip is written something that I get to do, a treat to help me weather the blues.   It can be as simple as “Go buy a fancy coffee drink and something chocolate” or “spend an hour knitting.”

Why not create your own rejection jar and fill it with things that will help you feel pampered?  Because, if you’re submitting your work, rejection will happen. Its all part of the game.