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Handling Rejection

rejectedA story bounced back yesterday.
Thank you for submitting, but we won’t buy it.

I’ve seen a few blog posts, today, on the subject of handling rejection, so here’s my two cents.

Always look on the bright side.
For instance…
My story bounced back, but the editor added a note specifying that they had 900 submissions, had accepted only the top 27, and my story was number 44 in the top 50. They hope I’ll submit again for the next call.
So, see, it’s a rejection, but comes with some good things attached.

Also, remember Bob Heinlein’s Rule Four and Rule Five

Rule Four: You Must Put Your Story on the Market
Rule Five: You Must Keep it on the Market until it has Sold

And in case you are interested in the whole set of Heinlein’s Rules, you can find them here, commented by Robert J. Sawyer. Well worth checking out.

So, now we clean it up, we check the list of open calls and magazines looking for a short story of its genre, and we send it off again.
It’s not a bad story – it was in the top 50 out of 900.
Let’s keep it on the market.

Oh, and finally – it’s OK to get upset when a story bounces back, but it’s got to be a thing resolved in ten minutes, and it must be private.

Not Quite the Story You Remember from Bible School
Sample Saturday: “Ghosts of Tupelo”