They say to be a writer, you need to grow thick skin. That’s the understatement of the century. You need full body armor and a shield, especially if you’re trying to dip your toe into the publishing world. I’ve been a little lucky, I’ve had a number of shorter pieces published and I’m very proud of my body of work. I hope someday to add some published novels to my collection.
Unfortunately, in my sixteen-year journey (I started to pursue publication when I was 16 and now, I’m dating myself…) there have been many perils and pitfalls of publishing. I’m not just talking about the rejections – and trust me, there will be rejections. Enough to paper a room, or in my case several houses. But there will be deals and agreements that fall through, misunderstandings, hurt feelings, etc. I’ve had an agent back out on me, I’ve had a magazine go defunct, I’ve had editors and readers openly question my sanity. I’ve been told the likelihood of success is small.
For a more recent example, a story that I placed last year will not be appearing in print after all. Of course, I’m sad and after going through the three stages of grief – anger, intense sadness, and sleepy indifference – I woke up this morning feeling refreshed and determined to resume sending this story out. It’s a good story, I’ve been told that, and I have to believe someday I will find a home for it.
You may feel like giving up, I do too from time to time. But if writing and publishing is like breathing for you, you will never be satisfied if you deny your heart’s desire. You have to pull yourself up by your bootstraps, put on the full body armor and raise your shield, and try again.
Now get back to writing and submitting!
Until next time…