You got mail: 7 tips for overcoming writing rejection


Feeling down today? Perhaps you are feeling the sting of rejection, woefully dejected by the no-thank you notes that keep arriving in your mailbox from publishing companies.


(Flickr: paraflyer)

Here’s a thought — turn that frown upside down. With those rejections, you have officially joined an exclusive club of authors who have had their work initially denied.

Read: Get published: Deliver your work from the shadows

The industry is filled with stories from writers — many of them now wildly famous — who have experienced the heartache of those awful letters. The key is to keep your chin up and your eye on the prize.

Read: Sink or swim: Choose your writing fate

Read on for some tips for overcoming rejection:

Accept that writing rejection is simply part of the writing game. Stories of instant success are rare.

Understand that a denial of your work is not personal. You are just one of thousands to have reached out to the publishing house that week. They can’t offer a contract to everyone.

Strive to target your submissions so that they reach the right publisher for your project. If they aren’t interested in memoirs, for example, don’t bother submitting yours.

Resist the urge to throw yourself a pity party. It gets you nowhere and only slows you down.

Remember that this is a competitive business with thousands of professional, talented writers who are just as deserving as you are.

Heed the comments you receive from the editors who reject you, then look for ways to improve your work and hone your craft.

Write and write some more. The only way to get stave off writing rejection is to keep writing. And the only way to get published is to remain persistent.

Kerri S. Mabee is managing editor at and founder of Breeze Media & Communications. Learn more about her at


Kerri S. Mabee

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