Tuesday, 22 August 2017

100 Rejections

School has started back up here in Finland so the kids are all out of the house for at least a few hours a day, so I'm back to the grind. 

I read an interesting article by Kim Liao recently about aiming for 100 rejections from magazines and competitions in a year. It sounds negative and maybe a bit masochistic, but it is actually quite motivating. Once you learn that rejection is not the end of the writing process. 

The idea is that in order to get 100 rejections you have to make at least 100 submissions and by making that many you will have a better chance of getting some acceptances. 

Without knowing there was a trend, I've been following the same idea. I try to submit to everything I can. I scroll the sites that call for submissions as found on this post and I make a list of magazines, grants, competitions I'm interested in and their deadlines. It's on my computer's desktop so I see it everytime I turn it on, so hopefully I won't miss a deadline. And as poems come in, I take note if they will suit certain themed issues, so I don't make too many simultaneous submissions. I reread my work carefully, make any changes I feel necessary and then send them out into the world again.

I've had 20 rejections so far this year for both my novel and my poetry. But I've also had 5 acceptances. That's one/fifth of my total submissions that have been decided upon. Not bad really. 

Over halfway through the year and I realise I'm no way near getting to my 100 rejection goal. I have 19 submissions still out there pending decision for chapbook and novel competitions, awards and regular poetry submissions. As soon as one comes in rejected, I send it back out again. The hard bit is the waiting while everything's out, but I try to fill that time by writing new poems.

Which I'm happy to say I'm getting back into the flow of after the long summer break. I've done lots of journal writing and note taking, but now I am able to focus on some poems that were in progress and start a few new ones. 

So how are you doing after the summer lag?

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