I said in an earlier entry that I would write about my first rejection. I think rejection is an important conversation to be had, and anyone who writes with any kind of seriousness has to deal with it. Even big shot writers get rejected. Granted, they can usually get picked up somewhere else, but they still have to deal with it.
The trick to dealing with rejection is, well, dealing with it.
My first rejection came when I finished my first novel way back in 1995. It was a novel written in large part thanks to the writer R. A. Salvatore. I’d been a fan of Fantasy literature ever since reading the Hobbit when I was a kid. I read everything after that: Edgar Rice Burroughs, C.S. Lewis, Phillip Jose Farmer, Marion Zimmer Bradley, Piers Anthony, Terry Brooks and many more. But R. A. Salvatore’s dark elf trilogy (books: Homeland, Exile and Sojourn) was the one that put me over the top. They were so good. The world Salvatore made was so amazing, such a palpable place, so real, it was a universe so wondrously escapist that when I finished reading I was charged with energy to write, with an overwhelming need to write a novel like those. There was just nothing I had ever wanted to do more.
The problem was, I didn’t know how. I mean, sure, I knew how to write stuff. And I’d written lots of short stories and things. But how do you write a NOVEL? That’s not just something you sit down and crank out, right? Even if you want to, you write yourself into corners, get lost, or lose your drive after a week or two. So I was just burning with the need to do it, but really didn’t know what to do with all that inspiration.
|A typical Franklin Covey store|
Day 1: Work on my outline for 15 minutes
Day 2: Work on my outline for 15 minutes
Day 3: Start writing – 20 minutes a day
Day 4: Write for 20 minutes
BAM, you have a novel (or at least a first draft).
|My Franklin planner|
I wrote a cover letter to go with the manuscript I sent, one that, looking back, was really, really sappy: it was all, “This is my first novel and, because you guys brought so much fun into my world as a kid, I am letting you have first crack at this amazing fantasy work which is sure to make millions for us all.”
|The first one got a position of honor and a frame...|
|... the rest of them get stabbed with tacks.|