I have gotten my fair share of rejections in the past, but none lately. I haven't been querying anything in the past couple of months because of the rewrite, but I got a hundred rejections for Without the Stone. Before I started writing fiction, I dabbled in poetry and submitted my work to magazines. Usually I get a handful of form rejections that don't offer any encouragement at all. Every so often I get a glimmer of hope from an agent that I am a good writer and my work is marketable.

I remember one specific rejection for something I submitted to Third Coast Magazine, Western Michigan University's literary journal, The rejection read something like this, "While it was a good read, we can't publish it at this time." If it was a good read, then why don't you publish it? The whole purpose of publishing is to entertain readers, and it sounded like mine did, so why not publish it?

I understand that agents are very busy people and get swamped with submissions. They don't have time to write personally to each one, hence the form rejection. Some only respond when interested. Agents need to understand that we writers don't want sugar-coated rejections. I would much rather get a form rejection than a sugar-coated one like the one above. Sugar-coated rejections don't make us feel any better. We still feel less than our best because our we weren't chosen for publication. Every agent has his or her own response method. All I'm asking is to beware of sugar-coating rejections. They add up, alluding vulnerable authors to false hopes. Give us the cold, hard, honest truth. We can handle it. What we can't handle is broken dreams.
 
 
...that I'm perfect. Because I''m not. I'm not the perfect wife (although I sure try to be), or daughter, or sister, or friend. And I'm certainly not the perfect writer (although I try to be perfect at that too because writing is my lifelong passion). I learn new things about writing every day, and when people are disappointed that I didn't come up with a certain idea for my novel sooner, it makes me mad! It's like they expect me to be perfect. How can anyone expect me to be perfect when I'm not even traditionally published yet? I wouldn't even expect someone as successful as J.K. Rowling to be perfect either, but I wouldn't expect anything less than page-turner from her.

...that I'm a strong woman. My friend and I were hanging out in San Mateo last weekend when we were accosted by some bums while we were waiting for the Caltrain. These men were the most ungodly men I had ever met - they were drunk and cussing at us and coming on to us. They asked us if we did meth. Do we look like the kind of ladies who do meth? We still have all our teeth in tact! We kept telling them we were married, but they wouldn't relent. One of them touched my knee! The other guy had his zipper undone and threatened to use his pepper spray on us. Why would a man need pepper spray?! My friend and I were scared out of our wits and I was getting ready to throw some punches because I know kickboxing. Lucky for us it was still daylight and there were people around. We went back to the Melting Pot where we were having dinner and the bartenders took care of us. I swore I felt Satan's presence when we encountered those bums. When I called home crying to my mom, she wouldn't hear of it. She wouldn't let me cry. She thinks crying is only for those who are dying. How else do you express anger or hurt or fear or frustration? Do you think you could have been brave or strong in this situation? I was the first time I had ever been accosted like that. I was afraid for my life.

It's a pet peeve of mine when someone close to me assumes something of me that I'm not. Even if you think I'm a sweetie or a nice girl, I do have my bad days, so watch out. You assuming something of me indicates to me that you don't know me as well as you think you do. I do overlook important details in my writing as I'm just starting out and my strength does wear out in times of stress and fear and hurt and anger. And if I need to come crying to you, I'd appreciate a shoulder to cry on.