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26 February 2013

I didn’t spend my Christmas/New Year break doing nothing. I planned to begin a new book on January 14th and wanted a stack of short work submissions out before that, the more so as over late December I’d written a number of new stories and several new articles which needed to find homes. And I like to keep a good number of submissions circling. Which brings me to what started this item. A writer friend asked me over Christmas if I didn’t get bothered by rejections. I grinned. The truth is that at any one time I’ll have between 20 and 35 submissions out, not the one or two at a time that she does. That’s why she finds rejection wounding. She has so much invested in each one. Say your investment in submissions is 100. She has two stories out, so a rejection on one is 50% and devastating. For the purpose of this I did a check. Currently out on submission at the time she asked, I had: 27 short stories, 7 articles, two books, two copies of my books for review, 2 contest entries, and a query letter. That’s more than usual but it happens that way when I’m about to begin a new book and want a head start. Of that 41, I expect to receive favourable response to about 10-12. So of 100% I have around 2.5 % invested in each result. And I expect a good outcome in about 25%. Wounded by the rejections I receive? Actually, not much, I’m too busy sending out another batch of submissions or writing new stuff. I’m always sorry if a book is rejected, but not devastated. It will probably sell sooner or later and right now I can’t hang about being wrecked over a book rejection, the new book is moving along well, and that’s more important. I know where I want to offer it and –

oh, yes, I’ve sold six of those articles and two of the stories to date, the query may end up in further sales mid-year, and one of the QUEEN OF IRON YEARS copies out for review has received rave reviews in three places. Bothered by rejections? Not pygmalian likely!

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