I did it! After a year in which I took on more writing and editing jobs than I thought I could handle in my spare time, I finally finished revising my own book. Sure, it took a lot longer than I initially expected, but the past 12 months have brought me so much growth in terms of my understanding of writing, and the opportunities I’ve had have done a lot to boost my confidence in my skills. As I closed the final chapter late Sunday night I was able to sit back and say, this is a story I would read again. I honestly can’t say that for a lot of the things I’ve written in the past.
Now comes the bigger challenge: queries, book proposals, sample chapters, and rejection letters. This won’t be the first time I’ve submitted a book to agents and editors, and I don’t expect it will be any easier than previous attempts either. The one thing I have on my side this time is a little more experience and a great reward program.
I’ve heard stories of other writers taking each of their rejections and skewering it on a bill spike. Some use them for target practice. Others have simply burned them. I use them as an excuse to treat myself. It’s kind of like my coffee punch card, for every rejection letter I receive I get a stamp. Once my stamp card is filled, I get a book, or I go to dinner with a friend — something to celebrate the fact that I put myself out there.
The Rejection Reward Program serves two purposes, it helps take the sting out of a form letter (I get an extra stamp if the letter is a personal note), and it encourages me to keep trying. After all, who can say no to the reward of your choice?
I’ll keep you posted as to my progress in the weeks ahead. For those of you who are in the same stage of writing as me, I’d love to hear what you do to keep yourself motivated. You can answer via the comment section on this page, or visit me and connect with some other writers over on my Facebook Writer’s Page.