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Thursday, January 28, 2010

I GOT IT!!!

If you checked out my blog last week you all know that I spent the weekend in beautiful, Sunnyvale , California. Which by the way wasn't so sunny! I found out when I got there it's just a clever name!

I went to an awesome workshop, THE FIRE IN FICTION, by, Donald Maass. This man is truly amazing. Not only did my brain hurt from everything he'd taught us throughout the day, but my gut was sore as well. Boy did he kept us laughing. I only hope that I will retain most of the things I learned that day! So much good stuff!!!

After my wonderful weekend,I headed home. About an hour before I arrived, my husband called to check on my whereabouts. He also tells me that I received a letter in the mail. FROM HARLEQUIN!!! I almost choked on my gum! "Did you open it?" I asked nervously. But of course he hadn't. And he wasn't home either so there was no knowing what the contents of that letter held. Lucky for me, my daughter was home, so I immediately called her giving her strict instructions to carefully open it.

She read the letter and with every word the first sentence held, my heart began to sink into the pit of my stomach. It was a letter indeed, but not the one I'd been waiting for. It was my first REJECTION! I did well as she read what they had to say. No water works. No cuss words. Not really anything at all. Just silence as I listened to her read. I even agreed with much of what the editor said was wrong with my work.

The hardest part came on the drive home when I had to call my hubby back and give him the news. Guess I wasn't going to be the next Nora Roberts like I'd thought. It was just me by myself on that long ride home. The more time I spent with myself the harder I started to cry. Funny thing is a couple of weeks prior to this I felt the rejection coming. Not because I didn't think my work was good enough. No. I could just feel it in my bones. Something wasn't right.

The minute I walked in the door, I went straight to the kitchen counter where "The letter" sat folded on top of it's envelope. It was the strangest thing... though I already knew what it said I had to see it for myself. Read it with my own eyes. Unfortunately, it was still a REJECTION!

The hardest part about being rejected was not the actual rejection. It's that empty confusion. That, "what the hell do I do now?" moment. I felt like a fifteen-year old girl who's boyfriend had just broken up with her. Essentially that's what happened. We broke up. Me and the potential publisher, that is.

Since I had mailed in my requested manuscript two months ago, I'd been this giddy little girl, so excited about the publisher who may like me. And now that I know it's over between us, I'm trying to figure out where do I go from here. Do I throw away the last five-years of my life? Shove Morgan Ranch in a closet and move on to the next set of characters? The next story? Or do I go back to the drawing board and try to reshape this manuscript back into something that publisher's will be fighting to buy? The answer sounds simple, but really it's not.

I've spent the last twenty-four hours trying to put the brakes on the wheel's that are spinning in my head. A hundred different scenarios have come and gone. And still the only answer I have is that I am not giving up. I just don't know what direction I'll be going. For someone as anal as me that's hard. I'm a very scheduled person. I have to know how things are going to turn out. What exactly I am doing at all times. This whole, I don't know what to do now thing doesn't sit very well with me.

This isn't the end of the writing road for me. In fact it's only the beginning. Rejections are part of almost every writers journey. Most writers get many of them before they sell their first book. I hope I never get another, but I'm sure this won't be my last. So tell me... have you been rejected? What did you do? Where did you go from there? Have any advice? Leave me a comment and let me know where you think I should go from here.

Thanks for stopping by Micole Writes Romance.

Hugs

Micole Black

14 comments:

Melissa Mayhue said...

Big hugs, Micole! Rejection sucks... but as you say, it IS part of the business. I think we've all been there. That's why there are so many PROs in RWA!:-)

Keep the faith. Keep working on other things, but don't completely forget Morgan's Ranch. Give yourself some space and time from it. One day you'll be able to go back and look at it again [and at the suggestions in the rejection letter] with a more dispassionate eye to see if those are really changes you want to make.

~ Melissa

Micole Black said...

Thanks Melissa! PRO is my next step! :)

hugs

Micole

Sarah Simas said...

Hi Micole!

Sorry for the rejection, but at least now you know. No more waiting and wondering. A clean break and you can focus on your next step.

I hope you frame the letter, while it may not have been the sort you'd hoped for, it's very symbolic for what you HAVE achieved. LOL I know there are many of us who'd love to just be at the point of having something TO submit. *wink, wink*

You'll get there. I know you will. :) (hugs!)

Micole Black said...

Too funny Sarah, i was thinking a Frame would be the best thing for that letter! :) Something to remind me that there is something better out there waiting for me!

You'll get to THE END before you know it and be able to submit as well! Thanks for stopping by and giving me the virtual chicken soup for the soul I needed! :)

Hugs,

Micole

Jacqui said...

Hi Micole,

Yes rejection sucks. I got my first rejection letter from Harlequin 3 months ago. I could feel it coming. I knew immediately what the letter was when I picked it up. Rejection. And a form letter too.

What did I do? I applied for my PRO status with Romance Writers of America and then went out in search of real feedback. I entered it in a couple of contests. Some I did well in, some I didn't. But the best thing was I got concrete feedback. I changed things but not the core story...and while I was doing it I moved on to my 2nd novel.

Hang in there and don't ever stop writing. As if we could ;-)

Jackie/Jacqui (from Las Margaritas)

Micole Black said...

I already have the PRO status form to fill out thanks to a friend who downloaded and sent it to me! :) That will be next. I plan to work on book 2 while trying to fix the boo boo's in book 1! Thanks for the encouragement!

Hugs

Micole Black

mcaposella said...

Remember you are now following the path of some of the greatest writers of all time. Hopefully you can get it next time and beat those authors rejection amounts.

Micole Black said...

mcaposella...

Thank you so much for the encouraging words and thanks for your stop to my blog! Hope things are well with you!

Hugs

Micole

HOrdunez said...

Micole, remember to believe in yourself and follow your dream. I am not a writer but there are many of us out here that believe in you and are just standing by your side until you reach your dreams. Every road has bumps in it, you will get to the end of your road because your are truely an inspiration to me and I am sure many others. I agree, frame the letter so it not discourages you but makes your more determined than other to prove them wrong. I know that you can do it my friend. I will be with you to see you through it all, I am here! And by the way, Morgan's Ranch, YES there are plenty of us here ready to read it!!!!!!!!!!! Keep your dreams Micole. Your friend always, Heather

Micole Black said...

Thanks Heather. I'm not losing the faith just trying to figure out where to go from here??? ;) I appreciate your kind words and determination to stand by my side to make sure my dreams come true! You are the best!!!

Hugs

Micole Black

Deb Salonen said...

Hi, Micole,
So sorry to hear about your rejection, BUT try to feel very good and positive about everything you've done to this point. It's a lot. You wrote a book. You attended a conference. You were bold enough to speak with an editor and send her your work. You listened--and heard--what she was telling you in her rejection letter. You went to Donald Masse and came away recharged with writing energy. This is part of the process and it's only one step. Don't lose sight of that. As I mention in my guest blog next week, a rejection means the manuscript you sent wasn't right for that line at this time. Nothing more. You will regroup and try, try again. That's what writers do.
All the best,
Deb Salonen

Micole Black said...

Deb,

Thank you for that. I'm at a regrouping point now. Trying to figure out where I am going next and with what story! I appreciate you stopping by and leaving me these wonderful words of encouragement.

Hugs,

Micole

Sheri Humphreys said...

Micole,
No matter how many rejections I get, with each submission I get the same semi-confident excitement that I carry around in an inside pocket until I get that email/letter -- AKA rejection. It gives the whole day a down turn. I remind myself that I can't be a writer unless I can take rejection. I have to be tough, have to be prepared for perhaps years of rejection, and have to believe that someday it will happen.
Micole, you'll figure out the next step. Remember, you're now in a very elite group -- a person who has written a book! Lots of people want to, try to, but many more fail than succeed. Not only did you finish, you rewrote, polished and put it out there for a professional to judge. A huge accomplishment. Sheri Humphreys

Micole Black said...

Thanks Sheri. Things are looking a little more clear every day! I'm glad you stopped by my blog!!!! Thank you, thank you!

hugs

Micole