[Tipster] What Does Rejection Say About Your Writing Mindset?

tipster post Mar 19, 2022

We all have different reasons for writing. Each of our writing paths is unique.

Some want to write for their family only. To ensure that the stories of their challenges and accomplishments don't get lost in the next generation.

Others want to write memoirs, fiction, or to contribute fresh ideas to their business community.

I recently listened to a podcast with a youth fiction writer.

She wrote her first book. Then submitted the manuscript to a big name literary agent.

And the agent took her on.


But the agent couldn't sell the book. No publisher wanted it.

I probably would have given up. Been angry. Kicked the dog (not a real dog).

No doubt, she was crushed after such a fast start.

But, she kept writing.

She wrote and submitted nine or ten additional youth fiction manuscripts. With different story lines for each.

Finally, at around 11 manuscripts, she landed a book deal. Maybe six or seven years later.

Ten Years of Overnight Success

I once heard one of the members of the country music group, The Dixie Chicks, talk about their "ten years of overnight" success.

That's a good line.

Another good line is this:

     "I have no experience but I'm willing to start at the top."

I've felt that way before. It's natural to think that our first attempt at writing will be successful.

If you aspire to publish with a traditional publisher, however, and you've never published before, you'll need to manage your expectations.

One of the writers who attends our weekly live coaching sessions self-published a book in 2010.

This summer, he will finally publish a book with a traditional business publisher.

That's 12 years and a lot of grind later.

My point is that for most aspiring writers, nothing happens in an instant.

That's why Melissa and I talk less about the significance of specific writing projects and more about developing your writing life.

A writing life is different from a writing project.

The writing-life mindset frames rejection in terms of the long haul. A writing project, on the other hand, is just a project, one of many to come.

I want every writer to believe in the great things that can happen over time. Over the course of a writing life.

And the best way to nurture your writing life is to get back to your current writing project.

No matter how small.

Now, buckle up and write!