Top 20 Lessons from WD: On Rejection

Hi writers,

Thanks to everyone who stopped by Monday to read or chat with bestseller Dianna Love. And, of course, I’d also like to extend a Promptly Thank You to Dianna for sharing her prompts and insights.

As promised, we’ll be giving away copies of Dianna’s Break Into Fiction to two random commenters. Jacqui Lyonelle and Lisa: Can you e-mail your addresses to me at writersdigest [at] fwmedia [dot] com, Attn: Zachary Petit, and I’ll make sure they find their way to Dianna?

Also, have you ever wallowed in endless rejections? How do you deal with it? (I ask this as I shiver and edit my first work of long-form fiction, bracing myself for the querying process to come.) Today we continue the Top 20 Lessons from WD in 2009 series.

No. 18: Right and Wrong
It took 80 queries before the most perceptive agent in the world took me off his slush pile. Then it was a score of editorial rejections and nearly a year before my agent had lunch with the right editor at the right time. To deal with rejection, you have to believe you’re right and they’re wrong.
—Ira Rosofsky (Nasty, Brutish & Long), as interviewed in our March/April issue.

Moreover, as literary agent Scott Hoffman wrote in our September issue, don’t get “even a little bit discouraged until you’ve received 50—maybe even 100—rejections on the project in question.”

For more tips, stay tuned—No. 17 is on its way Friday.



WRITING PROMPT: Dreamy

Feel free to take the following prompt home or post your response (500 words or fewer, funny, sad or stirring) in the Comments section below:

Take your latest dream, no matter what, and work it into a scene in a story you’re currently writing or editing.

Also, the website for Digital Book World has launched. Check out our new industry insider event geared toward helping consumer book publishers and their trading partners assess the challenges—and opportunities—presented by the digital age.

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3 thoughts on “Top 20 Lessons from WD: On Rejection

  1. Zac

    Hey Patti,

    Thanks for stopping by! I’m glad you’re enjoying them — they’re basically sentences that have refused to get out of my head after editing the magazines over the course of the last year.

    And there are many more to come (I’m a bit obsessed with the awesomeness of No. 1…)

    Jacqui–thanks again for your story, too!

  2. Jacqui Lyonelle

    Oh wow I can’t remember the last time I won anything! Thank you to Dianna Love for donating copies of Break Into Fiction and to Promptly for having her. Off to send email 🙂

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