The Best Rejection Letter Ever

My manuscript is not good enough.  Woo hoo!  I got my first rejection letter!  Why am I excited?  @ProNagger said it best: "Congratulations!  It means you are in the game."

Plus, the result isn't exactly a surprise.  Since I submitted the MS, I have been studying and practicing.  I have learned enough to know the work wasn't my best.  I still don't know how to write my best, but I am happy knowing I am moving from Uninformed Pessimism to Informed Pessimism.  

What am I talking about?  The Transition Curve of course.

I remember drawing this many times for (fellow) yuppies back in my previous life in Corporate America.  It looks like this:
Children's Books

Everyone starts in "Uninformed Optimism."  You are doing something new, and the challenge is exciting.  You are going to be the best accountant/librarian/juggler ever!

Then some gray clouds start to move in.   You realize the job is going to be difficult.  You don't know what you need to do to be successful.   I now realize my blog post about climbing out of a rut was part of the trip through "Uninformed Pessimism."

You screw up enough that you finally begin to compile a long list of the things you don't know.   In "Informed Pessimism" you still don't know what you are doing, but you are becoming more aware of your missing skills and knowledge.  There is comfort in knowing what you don't know.  (Yay, me!)

The brave and tough are able to gain the needed skills and move into "Informed Optimism."  You start to deliver on deadlines and expectations.  Success breeds more optimism.  You can do this.  In fact you do it every day.  

Oh the flames at the bottom right?  That's the crash and burn section.  I think it goes without saying you should not to crash and burn.  Just keep swimming.

I still have a lot of rejection to look forward to.  I am only on the first rung of Charlotte Dillon's rejection ladder: the photocopied stock rejection letter.  

But if watching Barbie and the Three Musketeers 37 times has taught me anything, it is that you can do anything you set your mind to as long as you keep trying.   


  1. I love your attitude! This is very well written - I think you made the right decision to leave the corporate world to pursue your dream of writing! I wish you the best of luck!!

  2. Support like that will push me right up the hill to optimism!

  3. A rejection means you're one more letter closer to an acceptance. Thanks for encouraging me in my struggle and teaching me the transition curve. Good luck with the writing!

  4. Good luck to you too. I am waiting for more fortune cookie stories on your blog!

  5. Heyyyy!!!! Congratulations!!!!! Thanks for the Transition Curve, too. So very true of everything. Happy writing! (And re-writing and querying and getting rejected and getting PUBLISHED!) :-D

    1. My horoscope today seems to indicate something awesome is about to happen, so I think a book deal is eminent. (Well, assuming I resubmit something...) :)


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