My First Official Rejection Letter


After submitting to a number of literary magazines and journals, I finally received my first actual rejection letter. For some writers this might feel like a horrific failure, but I choose to see it as achieving a rite of passage.  Up to this point, the type of rejection I’ve learned to deal with is the “we’re ignoring you, no response, your work is in the trash” kind of rejection. That dead silence stings more than most new writers think, yet I credit it for helping me develop the thick skin required by the industry.

I consider my rejection letter a victory not only because it is the first, but also because it came in response to my poetry.  Over the last year and a half, I’ve steadily been writing poetry in the hopes of finding my voice in this medium.  Through the outlet of my blog, I’ve been able to share this journey which ultimately culminated in my first submission to a poetry journal.  I’m proud to say that my poetry made through at least two rounds of consideration on the first try.

To go from never sharing my poems with anyone to receiving an actual rejection letter for my efforts has ironically boosted my self-confidence as a writer.  I’m saving this letter much like an entrepreneur frames the first dollar and hangs it on the wall.

I’m going to frame this!

The letter may have sent my work to the cutting room floor, but it is also very encouraging.  Rather than focus on the negative, I’m keeping my eye on key phrases such as, “liked your work” and “please consider submitting again.”

In effect, my gratitude goes to Wordrunner eChapbooks.  The editors at this fine literary journal have catapulted me to the next level of my dream of getting published.

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c.b.w. 2012