Monday, September 7, 2009

grin and bear it

Okay. I understand the nature of this business. That it’s mostly rejection, no matter how good you are.

But I don’t think its fair that because I know that, that I shouldn’t take any of this personally. That I know it only takes one “yes,” that I’m not allowed to feel bad about any of this. Because I know this hurts, it shouldn’t hurt. Because I can’t change it or fix it and I have nothing new to say about it, I shouldn’t say anything at all. Because this sucks and everybody knows it, but that’s the way it is, so I should just take it and smile.

I mean, this isn’t in any way a diatribe about being agents or being rejected or anything like that. I understand where they’re coming from.

But the fact is that it hurts. And most of the time, I think I do a really good job of dealing with it. I get a rejection, and I go, “Alright. Let’s look at another agent” or “Let’s tweak the query letter or the book” or even “Okay. Maybe this idea isn’t quite right. Let’s try writing another book entirely.” I mean, I try to learn from mistakes, turn negatives and positives, and use everything I possibly can to improve my writing.

But some days, it hits me harder, and I just want to cry. And I don’t want anybody to tell me that it’ll be okay, that somebody’ll publish my book someday, because they might not. In fact, odds are against that ever happening. But that’s not the point.

The point is that I don’t want to be told that I’ve said this before. That I go through this about “once every six months.” Do you realize how much rejection I’ve endured in the six months prior to that? The fact that I only take two days a year to sob and freak out is pretty damn remarkable.

The point is that this is hard, and I go through this the best I can. But on the days when it’s not going good, I don’t need any words of wisdom. Or any jewels about how great my writing is and how one day everything will be a magical fairy tale. All I need is for you to listen and remind me of the things that make me happy.

Because, at the end of the day, despite all the rejection and pain, the thing that makes me the happiest is writing. And maybe that’s the point. Even if I can’t get paid to do something I love, at least I can do something that I love. At least I have that.