Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Horse, getting back on

One of the things I did while I was home sick with the flu this weekend was organize my submissions chart, the Word document where I keep a list of the publications I've sent to, what story I sent, if I heard back, etc.

I am one of those people who loves organizing things (I was the 8 year old who got overjoyed at buying school supplies. Trapper keepers! Rulers! Yea!). So usually I kinda dig getting by sub chart in order.

But this time, it depressed me. "Look at all those places I've submitted to--ie, Look at all those places who rejected me!" I said aloud.

Being sick is not a time when I am apt to keep things in perspective, mind you.

Luckily, my husband and Steven King saved me. Brian and I had just finished reading King's memoir/writing book, aptly called, On Writing: A Memoir. Brian quoted the part in King's book where he talks about the spike he used to keep on his desk, which he would use to impale/store his rejection letters. Brian said, "He had thousands on that spike! Thousands! You only have ten on your chart!"

Point taken. Today, with my flu receding, I am getting back on that horse. I looked at my (very well organized) submission chart and saw the list of places I still had to send to, instead of the list of places that already said no. Best Blogger Tips


Kim said...

I'm really enjoying your blog. I'm a writer without an MFA. If it makes you feel any better I have at least 75 rejections, maybe a dozen scrawled with encouraging words and I've had 3 stories published. The ratios aren't usually pretty. Instead of a spike I use a shoe box. Hang in there. I'm always looking for ways to improve my submitting process which I've ignored for the last year but I'm ready to get back on that horse again too. Thanks.

DJPare said...

Good point by Brian!
I thought King's book on writing was really good.

Erin Dionne said...

With every rejection, you're one editor closer to finding one who loves your work--and you'll never meet if you don't work through that list!

Writer Bug said...

Thanks all! It was encouraging to see your comments. I know it's all a numbers game (ie you have to send out a ton, and get many rejections, to get one yes), but it's frustrating. It's helpful to have people who understand!