Yesterday I gave up on publishing my novel, The Dream Master. I decided that it needed to be put aside, that it shouldn’t be sent to agents anymore. All because I got two more rejection letters from agents.

That makes eight so far. Eight nicely worded emails from agents I thoroughly researched, saying “Unfortunately, your project is not right for us at this time,” and “Unfortunately, I feel that in today’s market, I cannot take on projects unless I feel strongly about them,” and simply, “I’ll have to pass at this time.” Most heartbreaking are the agents who receive so many queries that they are unable to respond at all. You are told to wait 4-10 weeks and, if they have note responded, assume that they are passing.

But despite the pain, despite how they make me feel incompetent, I forgive them. In fact, I understand them. It isn’t possible for every single book written to be published. There aren’t enough people in the world who love to read books. Heck, there isn’t enough time for people who love to read books to even read that many books. So agents have to say “no.” It’s hard enough to sell a really good book, let alone one that’s not quite good enough. Now you’re probably thinking, “But what about J. K. Rowling? She got rejected so many times before being accepted.” It’s true that future bestsellers get rejected too, and the agents who passed are probably kicking themselves as a result. However, if the agents who passed didn’t feel strongly about a future-bestseller’s story, then they couldn’t have promoted it as well as an agent who truly loved the story. Those bestsellers, under another agent, may never have been sold to the right publishers, and then would never have sold as well.

So much about life is timing and chance. And my chance will come. Maybe not with The Dream Master. Okay, so that sucks, but I’ll live. I’ll write more novels and those will be better, because I’ll have more experience. As I wrote in a play way back in middle school, “Time goes on and we remember freezing rain half past the hour, rushing cars, and business men, babies crying, as we go along this long road we call life.” Looking back, that is such a rambley, terrible sing-songy phrase. However, the message remains true. We’ll remember the small things that bothered us, but we just keep going down the road of life. Those little things make up who we are; we are the experiences that we have had. However you say it, rejection isn’t something to cry about. It adds to who I am, and I will keep going.

And just to finish this on a happier note, after giving up on The Dream Master, I gave up on giving up. I decided to ask my creative writing teacher to look over my query letter. She’s a successful science fiction author, and she said she would be delighted. So, with help, maybe The Dream Master will live again. And if not, I have some very in-depth notes about the next novel I am going to write… Hypermedia. I don’t want to go into details right now, but I plan on participating in NaNoWriMo again ( Click here for the site ). Somehow, despite traveling between three states, doing homework, studying for tests, etc., I WILL write the story. I feel much more confident in my writing now that I’ve fully written and edited a novel. Wish me luck!

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