4.Keep a chip on your shoulder.

Here’s a surefire way not only to create a novel not worth reading, but scuttle your career as well. Decide that arrogance and defiance are your two weapons of choice to bulldog your way to publication.

When you have a manuscript rejected, treat it as a personal insult. Think of editors and agents as nasty creatures who love saying no, who sit at their computers laughing Bwahahahahaha as they fire off their favorite thing: the impersonal form letter.

You can carry all this to your social media sites and publicly rebuke such shortsightedness. By name.

Those who do break through and obtain a career have the crazy idea that they can recover—even learn—from rejection and use it as motivation to write better.

They foolishly remember the admonition of writer Ron Goulart: “Never assume that a rejection of your stuff is also a rejection of you as a person. Unless it’s accompanied by a punch in the nose.”

Yes, they recognize that rejection hurts. But they  believe it’s part of the process and always will be. Writers like this do the following:

  • Wallow, then write. They let the rejection hurt for half an hour or so, then get back to the keyboard.
  • Learn from the critique. They go through the letter and their manuscript and attempt to draw out any lesson the rejection brings. They understand that people in the publishing industry actually want to find new authors.

Of course, these are terrible tips for not writing a novel!

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