Liars Club

Of Misery and Chocolate

by Marie Lamba on August 23, 2010

in Advice for Writers,The Writing Life

Time for a new Burning Question about writing and publishing. Check in daily to see how we Liars respond. To see past answers to other Burning Questions, click on our For Writers page.  And if you would like to pose a Burning Question for our group of authors to ponder and post about, just shoot us an email or post a comment, and we’ll be happy to consider it!

Burning Question #8: How do you deal with rejection?

Marie Lamba’s response:

I brood. I pull into myself and feel ugly and stupid. I stew. I grouse. I eat ice cream. I tell myself I suck. I devour a chocolate bar. I look over my rejected bit of writing and see every flaw. Why hadn’t I seen that before? OF COURSE IT WAS REJECTED.

I consider another line of work. I hear the button factory is hiring…

I snap the leash on my dog’s collar and take a long long walk. I breathe deeply, and force myself to forget about writing. But my mind whirls back to the rejection again and again with renewed sting.  I get a cup of coffee.  I watch a cheesy chick flick. I pace.

And I look at my rejected piece of writing again. You know, it doesn’t suck. I might change one or two words, but damn if it ain’t bad. I get pulled into the writing again, and find myself enjoying the words of this manuscript. And remembering past rejections that turned into acclaimed successes.

I remind myself that readers are subjective, that novels have specific audiences. That I want an editor who is head-over-heels in love with my work. That once my agent finds this editor, things will be different.

I start to feel better. I start to feel encouraged.  I eat another piece of chocolate. I start to feel fat.

Okay, the pity party is officially over. I’m ready to move on. Ready to feel strong and hopeful again.

Marie Lamba is author of the young adult novel WHAT I MEANT… (Random House), her articles appear in numerous publications, including Garden Design, Writer’s Digest, and RWA – the national publication of Romance Writers of America.  She usually keeps a stash of chocolate nearby…


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