Today I’m blogging about the “Surviving, Overcoming, and Learning the Truth About Rejection” Workshop presented by Christie Craig, Rose Hilliard, Faye Hughes, and Kim Lionetti.
Rejection. Whether a form response to a query, a personalized rejection, or criticism from critique partners or contest judges, we’ve all been there. And it’s never fun! But in an industry filled with rejection, getting personalized rejections or criticism can invaluable to an author. So how can you use the rejection to improve your writing?
- Look for key words that suggest you should be writing in a different genre. Maybe you’re writing historicals but your voice is more suited to contemporary. Don’t forget to take a step back and really listen to feedback.
- Evaluate all your rejections for common themes. If everyone says the market you’re targeting is not selling right now, maybe you shouldn’t write another book just like it. If 3 out of 5 agents tell you to work on your characterizations, you know what you need to do.
- If you’re told your book isn’t different enough, you need to concentrate on your hook/high concept.
- If you are getting a lot of positive feedback but the agents or editors state that they just don’t love it enough, this can mean you need to ramp up your tension or characters’ emotions, or that your story isn’t high concept enough.
Editor Rose Hilliard says her biggest reasons for rejecting a book are that it’s not high concept enough or that execution is not up to par.
Do you have any personal tips for overcoming rejection? For me, I generally curse up a storm while rummaging the kitchen for chocolate, let the rejection (or bad critique) sit for a day or two, then sit down and review it in depth. I can typically find at least one good piece of information in there that will help me become a better writer.