Monday, March 04, 2013

About Rejection

I don't blog very much these days. Why? Because I have four young children, one who jumped into terrible twos with both feet three months ago, a husband in grad school, three children in both school and piano (and I am a Piano Nazi), and my in-laws with two teens still at home living with me. (That makes ten in our house.:D)

Oh, and because I'm writing two books a year.

Well, that's not exactly accurate. I am having two books published a year. But I'll let you in on a secret. I'm writing more than that. Or, at the very least, I'm writing pieces of more books than that.

Why would I bother writing bits and pieces of more books than I'm having published? Because I just love the ideas and am itching to write them? As much as I wish the answer to that question was yes, I seriously just do not have the time for that these days. Maybe when my husband graduates. (Two months! Two months!)

So why am I writing these extra bits of books?

Because I write them, I turn them in, and they get rejected.

Yes, that's exactly what I said.

As a starry-eyed, not-yet-published writer, I thought that if I could just get an agent I would say goodbye to rejection forever!!

Two books and 15 rejections later I sold Wings.

Wings went on to be a #1 NYT Bestseller. One of the few debut novels ever to do that. Well, NOW I would truly say goodbye to rejection forever!

Not. So. Fast.

I want all of you aspiring authors who are drowning (and yes, some days it truly does feel like drowning) in rejections to know that published authors, bestselling authors, mega-ultra bestselling authors know how you feel. No, really.  I had a full novel rejected after three bestselling novels and a partial rejected after four.  It's easy to think that once you've made it, you've made it forever. But it's not true.

So what do I do? The same thing you do. I pick myself up off the ground, I wipe away my tears, I eat way too much chocolate, and then I try to write something better. Sound familiar?

So I guess this is a really long way to say that the book that seriously poured out of me over Winter Break has been accepted for publication. And when the news came in, yes, I was excited and happy and all those things. But above all, I was so incredibly relieved, because it was my third attempt to fulfill this contract.

It doesn't end, guys. And I don't mean that in a demotivating way. You have to always be reaching, always learning, always pushing yourself to be a better writer. So when your next rejection comes, as it inevitably will, remember that we're all doing this together and that your next story will be better if you want it badly enough.

Ciao!

10 comments:

Kristan Hoffman said...

Though I would of course prefer to naively dream that rejection ends the day I get an agent, in reality I appreciate this post and your reminder that we must always be ready to push past the doors that close, to look for new ones, to create them even.

meganwagnerlloyd said...

Wow, I did not know this was such a frequent occurrence for published writers. This is so good to know!

Amanda Hosch said...

Thanks, Aprilynne. This was exactly what I needed to hear (read) today. Chocolate first, then onwards with the WIP.

June G said...

Thanks for taking the time from a crazy, busy schedule and packed house to let us know how this publishing thing really works, Aprilynne! Much love to ya!

Amber said...

I love what you write and it's hard to fathom you being rejected. I'm just glad that you never give up. Thank you.

Lori Ann Stephens said...

THANK YOU FOR THIS. Really. Thank you.

Graham Bradley said...

I really needed this right now. Thank you.

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