Success only flourishes in perseverance -- ceaseless, restless perseverance.
--Baron Manfred Von Richtofen

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Close Don't Count

Boy it rocks to have a story in print! Good thing, too, because I got another rejection letter today. It was for my short story, "Highway Songs." It said, in effect, "This is well-written but . . ." I've had a number of rejections for this story that begin that way. "It's a good story, but it bogs down in the [certain section]." Okay, valid point. May have to consider revising that section. "This is well-written, but we want character driven stories. We felt it was plot driven." Um, okay. "This is well-done, but it's not quite right for us." Okay, that was from the editor-in-chief of Asimov's, and was actually pretty cool for a rejection. I've had two or three others for this story along the same lines. I'm getting tired of the "buts." I'm tired of just being close! Close only counts in horse shoes and hand grenades. Sometimes it makes me want to throw up my hands and say, "That's it. I quit!" But I can't. The thought of quitting hurts my heart. I couldn't give up writing if I wanted to (which I don't), and I can't stop trying to get these stories published, either. They mean something to me. I have something to say, and I want people to hear it. I want readers. I want to touch somebody's heart. So, I guess if I'm this close, I might as well keep going. (Having The Bearer's Oath out does a lot to keep me going, I must admit). How do you all find the will to keep going in the face of rejection?

4 comments:

Tess said...

"How to you find the will to keep going in the face of rejection?"

There's a choice?? :D

Lady Glamis said...

This is close but we had other work that we liked better... is essentially what they're saying. So one day you'll be the better!!! Don't give up.

Angie said...

Thanks, gals. I think it is ironic that I am on the other end of this process on a daily basis (well, not so much the last month since we're closed to subs for the summer), and I know how it is to get good stories that we don't accept for one reason or another. It doesn't mean that the stories aren't good or that the writing is bad or anything like that. I know it, but rejections still bum me out.

Suzette Saxton said...

Don't quit or you'll have one very depressed Suzy banging on your door. ;)