Monday, October 4, 2010

Writers Helping Writers

As I hinted at in a previous post, I got hit with a rejection not too long ago that stung.  When a full manuscript gets rejected it always hurts more than the partial.  With a partial you can always say the reader didn't get to the good parts, but with a full, it's final and no matter how kind the agent's words, there's no way to avoid the burn.

The thing about this business is it turns on a dime, and after sending out  a new batch of queries just one night after getting the rejection, I received a positive response early the next morning.  Yes, less than twelve hours after sending the query, a full was speeding through cyberspace.  I don't want to jinx anything, but my reality this week is very different than my reality last week.  And it is good.

However, what I want to write about is what got me through the initial burst of disappointment. This writing business is brutal on the ego.  Tougher people than me have packed it in.  But I find I can keep going as long as I don't feel alone.

That's really the key.

Through different online outlets like blogs, Facebook and Twitter, I've met some amazing writers.  I'm also a member of two local writing groups that offer tremendous support and camaraderie.  Whether online or in person, these are people who are going through the same battles I am.  We're writing and submitting and dealing with rejections. Or maybe we're doubting whether what we write is good enough to be seen. When the rejection came, I reached out for a hand, for some sympathy, for some advice and it came back in droves. I was able to put the rejection in perspective and move on, but I was only able to do it because of some women with very big hearts.

I've always found the writing community to be a pay-it-forward kind of place. I was on the receiving end of that last week.  I can only hope that I have to opportunity to do the same for someone when they need the help or encouragement to keep going.  Because when we stick together and weather the storms with others, reaching that finish line is not only easier, there are more people to celebrate the success.

How do you feel less alone?  Has someone reached out and helped or encouraged you?


  1. Jeannie, you deserve all kinds of good! So glad it's moving in that direction. I'm always here for you!!

  2. All the greats were rejected one time or another. You are in good company. :)

  3. I've had help and encouragement from my fellow writers so many times I've lost count. Sometimes they lend a hand, sometimes they give a much-needed kick in the butt. The amazing thing is, they almost always know which I need when.

    Hang in there. It sounds stale after a while, but it really is true that perseverance is the most important "skill" you can have in your writer's toolbox. :)

  4. WAAAH! I understand EXACTLY what you mean because I experience that same support and encouragement. You will MAKE it. I know this.

  5. Michele~Same here. As you embark on that rewrite know you have a safety net. Thanks for everything.

    Dina~It doesn't always help to know about those rejections when I'm nursing the wounds, but I know you're right. Thanks for the encouragement.

    Linda~I find it amazing that other writers always know what we need. It's like some weird telepathy. Thank goodness for it.

    Patty~Fortunately, you and I have distance (or lack of it) going for us. Thanks for being a part of this. I can't wait to see your book go the distance.

    As always, thanks for reading.


  6. Jeannie, this is the single most thing I love about blogging and tweeting. It's this amazing community. Like you said, we know what each other is going through, which is huge.

    It shows a heck of a lot of courage that you dusted yourself off and sent out more queries. And then another request? Awesome. You'll get there!

  7. Julie, it's the people that have kept me going. It's a good thing we all have each other.

  8. the thing about getting help is sometimes you have to know when to ask for it. that's my biggest writing struggle at the moment...

    and again, congrats! on the positive news that followed so quickly after the bad. i didn't think the positive would take long. i love being right. :)

  9. I love it when you're right, too, Abby. Let's hope you're predictions continue to pan out.