Handling rejections

Everybody gets them. I’ve had more rejections to submissions than I can count. I also have had acceptances, so it balances out in a cosmic sort of way.

When I get a rejection I think, “It wasn’t a fit for this publisher/agent/editor.” Or maybe it wasn’t the right story at the right time, or some other reason that makes me feel better. I once got a really scathing rejection from an editor that was so horrible I deleted it like squashing a cockroach. I decided she was suffering from a particularly bad case of pms the day my manuscript landed on her desk. Because, 10 beta readers had loved the book. So I knew it wasn’t as bad as she claimed.

Anyway, we get them and we get through them. Not everyone loves what you write. I’ve been fortunate to have readers give me good reviews on my published books and have even received a fan letter or two. Honestly, one fan letter equals about 10 rejections on the emoticon scale.

So when I checked my sales report the other day I saw that someone had bought a book and then returned it. Now, this is a book I have listed for 99 cents because it is a supportive book for people contending with cancer and I am not looking to make money from it. Many readers said it helped them get through it, and bought it for friends and relatives who had just been diagnosed. It is also a personal journey, so having the book returned was more of a rejection of me than a rejection of my writing.

Yes, it hurt that it was returned. For 99 cents. I wouldn’t have bothered. I have bought books that I put down after the first three pages, but I never thought of getting my 99 cents back. Too much trouble. Which means this reader really hated the book and wanted it off her Kindle or Nook like I want spoiled food out of the refrigerator.

The up side is, I checked my listings just to make certain he or she didn’t post a 0-star review on the page. They didn’t, but I did discover my latest book is listed. I was excited about that as the publisher hadn’t let me know the release date. There have been a lot of changes going on — new name (Astraea Press is now Clean Reads) with a new website and logo, so I am not upset about falling through some crack. I’m just happy it is available.

And I hope no one buys it and returns it. I had enough rejections before getting it published.





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