This week I received my first rejection. It was for my young adult fantasy and yes; I know that this is part of this business. Honestly, the rejection is a good thing. I don’t want a literary agent who doesn’t love my book as much as I do. I want someone ready to work hard, just as I did while writing it. Someone who loves the characters, their troubles and victories and will not rest until the rest of the world is enjoying them. That is the acceptance I want. Until then, life goes on and writing goes on, but it never hurts to stop by the ‘Happy’ file.
What is a ‘happy’ file you ask? You may have read about authors that save their rejection letters as tools for motivation. That is a great tactic and let me tell you; since I received my rejection my writing has been on fire! But I still prefer a more positive solution. A ’happy’ file is where I keep copies or even notes of my successes. Some items towards the front is the beautiful book cover for my published non-fiction book, ‘Caring for Your Special Needs Dog.’ It always makes me smile. I’m a published author in something that I am passionate about. And that cover is beautiful!
I have an email from a reader that said she was going to adopt a special needs dog because she’s seen the ease and rewards of saving one thanks to my book. This email still makes me cry.
I save emails from critique partners and beta readers that talk about how much they enjoy my story. I have thank you notes from fans of Cassandra Clare’s ‘The Mortal Instruments’ series thanking me for holding an essay contest. I report on her series as The Mortal Instruments Examiner. And your successes do not have to be “writing” related.
The number one item in my ‘happy’ file is a picture of my daughter. She is my biggest success and will continue to be long after I write a blog telling you that my fiction novels have hit the New York Times bestselling list. Having a baby is always a miracle. However, I was on bed rest and fed through IV’s the majority of my pregnancy. It was horrible and I know how lucky I am to have my blue-eyed beauty.
When I decided I was going to become an author I read all the articles and blogs on rejection. I knew I would not be the one person in the history of the craft to defy all odds. Instead of focusing on the negative, focus on the positive. For each rejection, there are still many reasons to be happy and keep writing—and maybe with a renewed passion after a trip to your ‘happy’ file. What’s in your ‘happy’ file?
I LOVE listening to music. I must have it while I write and I always listen to a short clip to get pumped up before launching into my days writing goal. I’m currently obsessed with the song below. It is from the ‘Real Steel’ movie trailer and it almost makes me want to pay the extra money for a sitter to go see the movie. Enjoy!
I will be hosting a live webinar on September 26 6:30-8 PDT with Farm Dogs USA titled ‘Caring for Special Needs Dogs.’ My lecture will be based off my book, ‘Caring for Your Special Needs Dog’ along with new research. Click here for more information.
Author Katie Ganshert, ‘Three Criteria for a Killer Title.’
Literary Agent Donald Maass at Pitch University, ‘How to Be a Story Master.’
Author and social media guru Kristen Lamb’s, ‘Deadly Sin of Writing #4- Beware the Bog of Back Story.’