The other day I got my first rejection from Associated Content for an article focusing on weight loss tips. They claimed the subject was too broad. I then decided to visit the Associated Content message board, and discovered that a number of people were complaining about articles having been rejected based on a new criteria or editors on staff.
I can appreciate any business paying money for quality, so I don’t take this rejection personally. It was bound to happen eventually. I take solace in knowing that primarily there wasn’t much in the way of flawed writing in and of itself; but the subject matter. There’s a lesson here, I’m certain of it.
Write for demand.
Writing encompasses not just entertainment value but informative as well. The words need to catch the attention of readers, while keeping them entranced to the end. I think this is truly an art. How often can you say that of any writing; that you were so caught up in a story that you couldn’t put the book down.
I also find myself wondering about content versus style. Some writing impresses me with the sheer beauty of the words formed into eloquent sentences. Other times the content is that which catches me. True happiness is when I find both wonderful content intermixed with powerful words. This is when you set aside the words and just bask in the afterglow of what you’ve read. Ah yes!
Rejection leaves one feeling…well…rejected. Writers shouldn’t take anything so personally, but I can see why this is so difficult. Writing is a glimpse in one’s soul, where the author delves deep within him/herself to put what comes up to paper (or pixel). This is a creation, not just some drive! But when that is rejected; you’re left feeling hollow and unloved. To a reader, however, the words are just that; words.
Ideally, a formal rejection should provide some constructive criticism or at the very least, some reasons as to why your piece was not accepted. Take their advice to heart, but not to soul. Editors though excellent in knowing grammar and proper English, and the medium to which they focus on, are not experts in every field. You may find submitted the same piece to another publisher might end up accepted. Even J.K. Rowling of the Harry Potter books had her work rejected by twelve publishing houses before finally being accepted. So even ‘great authors’ find the rejection letters in their mailbox.
So accept the rejection with quiet dignity, and try and try again.