I thought I knew how to keep motivated when the rejection letters came in. I did…last year. The rejection letters were getting better and better. The agents and editors were writing comments. They were saying the stories were great, but just not right for their imprint. Or that my writing made the grade, but the story didn't grab them. But I was happy; they were writing personal rejections. Not form letters.
This year, I've been getting rejected by contests. Sure, lots of people must be entering them. But that's just rationalizing. Plain and simple: my writing wasn't good enough. The Zebulon judges slaughtered the latest iteration of the first chapters of "Nyghtmare's Code." After a week of gestating their critique, I realized they were right. But I'd already sent that version to two more contests. One of which, I learned today, didn't make it to the final cut. My friend's did. And I am happy for her. Really. I am. A high tide floats all boats!
How do I plug the holes in my ego, I mean boat, though?
- Submit again. Finish the rewrite and send it off again. This week. I rewrote a couple chapters already. Do more tomorrow. Edit the next day. Send by the end of the week.
- Repeat next week.
- Get up a master calendar with concrete writing goals. I bet those lawyer-turned-authors do that and that's why so many of them are successful.
- Rewrite. Rewrite. Rewrite.
- Read. Read. Read. Which I am going to do right now. It's 10:19 PM. I've been up since 4:13 AM. Time to get off the computer and snuggle up with my imaginary boyfriend who I get to read about in a good book.
- Decide if I am going to Crested Butte's Conference. It's the one whose contest I didn't final in. It's an awesome conference. It's a long ways from Alaska but I went last year when "Unigoat" was a finalist. It's be fun to go with my friend who might just win this year!