I’m sure I’ve blogged about rejection numerous times at this point, but since I continue to collect rejection letters, why not continue blogging about them?
Over the summer, I wrote a story that my husband adored. He likes almost all my stories, but this one he really, really liked. He particularly enjoyed the nasty anti-hero at the center of the story and the unhappy ending.
On the other hand, I didn’t like the way I’d originally executed my idea, so I set it aside for a couple months. Eventually, I brushed it off and polished it up a bit before sharing it with my writing group. They provided extensive feedback, and I acted on it, hoping that the new, much improved story would dazzle the editors. By then, the story had grown rather dear to me, probably due to my investment in it. I sent it off into the world, hoping for the best.
I submitted to one magazine. It was rejected, but the editor liked it enough to ask if she could share it with the editor of another magazine owned by the same company.
But it was rejected again.
I then decided to make the story more accessible for a secular audience. More polishing. Subbed again, this time to a more mainstream sci-fi publication.
So now, this story, so beloved by my husband, so thoroughly nurtured by me, is sitting on the shelf, an old maid. She has been rejected three times, and her hopes for the right match are rapidly dimming. Her successfully married-off siblings bring some comfort, but doesn’t a Jewish literary mother deserve to shep some nachas from her darling digital offspring?
I’m at the point that I can’t even tell if the young lady is truly the decent, upstanding young lady I think she is. I’ve simply read her too many times. When I look at a page of her now, I see not only the words on the paper in front of me, but the ghosts of all the words from previous drafts.
Clearly, I will be shelving this dear creation once again, at least until I can check up on her with anything approaching objectivity.