Thursday, June 23, 2011

Dealing with Rejection

Yup, that's right. My story was rejected.

To be honest, I have been talking to people about this submission in this way. "So I submitted a story to be published. When it gets rejected from them, I will submit another story, and submit Periculum to another publisher."

My daughter asked me why I was being pessimistic. I explained to her that it would be truly amazing if; the very first story that I ever submit, to the very first publisher that I submit it to, would then publish it. It would have been great. But it would have just been incredible and unbelievable.

So I have started a spreadsheet of on-line publishers that take short stories from unpublished authors. And if I work at this. I can have a dozen different stories submitted to various publishers at the same time before the year ends.

And then that gives me the potential to get a dozen rejections at the same time as well. But that is okay too.

First off, I haven't been trying to get published for very long, so there is no way that I don't have quite a few rejections coming. And Second, this whole thing is an experiment to see if I can apply statistical probability to short story publishing.

I won't insult anyone by claiming not to have emotional reactions. I had a pang of sadness reading the automated rejection email. And I had some trouble concentrating on writing for a day or so. I wanted to re-read "Periculum" and see if I could figure out what might have been wrong.

But I have a great new idea that I am working on now. "Legend of Trees" is turning into something fun to write. I am just about finished with my time travel story, "Given Enough Time." And in between, I wrote a really short short story about "Schrodinger's Cat."

One of these lucky stories will be my next submission to Strange Horizons this month, and I plan to submit "Periculum" to a new publisher at the same time.

So that's it. Dealing with rejection by letting your self talk a breath, and then getting back out and writing some more.


  1. Mine condolences. I was pleased with the original `Periculum', hopefully there is some feedback on where/why things didn't line up.

    One message I got from ISBW (Mur Lafferty) is that rejection happens, allot. And I am glad to see more work `in the pipe'.

    "Be Mighty"


  2. Thanks Drew,

    Sadly, but not unexpectedly, the rejection email was very automated. No feed back and very [title of story here] in the way it was written.

    Not a reflection on them, just the process they use.