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How to Handle the Literary Rejection Game


When it comes to being a truly complete writer, you will need to strengthen your resolve and know how to handle literary rejection. Remember that there will be times where you will get disappointed. You may pour your heart and soul into your work, yet there is really no guarantee that people will like your work. There will be times where your work will be scrutinized. However, you should never let this stop you from reaching your goals as a writer. You will need a set strategy to do so.

Here are some easy to follow tips on dealing with rejection as a writer.

1. Don’t expect too much

A key aspect of learning how to deal with rejections as a writer, is to not expect too much. Remember that there is really no guarantee that your work will be received well. You may give your all into your work, however, there will be times where people will criticize your work. Your manuscript may get rejected by a traditional publishing house, or your writer’s blog articles may not get the right amount of traffic. No one ever said being a writer is easy.

As a rule, you should never expect too much. This does not mean that you should not hope to achieve success with your work, however, you should not put all your hopes into one writing project. That way, should your work not get the same reaction as you expected, you won’t be crushed by disappointment.

2. Meditate

Getting rejected as a writer is not a great feeling. Whether your article was criticized by a reader, or a publishing house rejects your manuscript, it still hurts a great deal. This is why you should try meditation. This practice will allow you to stay calm no matter how disappointing the news may be.

Meditation originated in India and China, and was used by religious groups to gain enlightenment. The act of meditation is all about focusing on your breathing. Take the time to sit somewhere quiet. Take deep and slow breaths and just focus on your breathing.

The sessions do not need to last too long, what’s important is that you are able to control your breathing and ultimately lower your anxiety levels.

3. Share your feelings with fellow writers

While being a writer is usually a solitary journey, this does not mean that you have to do it alone. This is especially true if you are struggling with having your work rejected. It is a very heavy weight for any writer to carry, and you should not think twice of sharing your feelings with fellow writers.

While you could share your feelings with your family and friends, it is better if you share your feelings with fellow writers, because they know firsthand what you are going through. They know the disappointment and the sinking feeling of not getting a positive reaction from readers. They also know how best to console your hurt pride, and push you to do better next time.

4. Learn from the criticism

If your writing was criticized, it is very understandable to feel despondent and dejected. However, this does not mean that you should not learn from your mistakes. Remember that a majority of critics don’t want to bring you down. They just want you to do better. As a rule, you should take a more introspective look at their critique. For example, your manuscript was rejected.

Take the time to check the editor’s comments. What were the key reasons they rejected your work? What could you improve about your writing? By taking a closer look at your mistakes and rectifying them, you could prevent yourself from making the same mistakes next time.

5. Have a strong mindset

While you could get all the tips and support throughout your time as a writer, it ultimately depends on you. Remember that there will always be times where you will get disappointed. You won’t always get what you want, and you will have to struggle to make your name as a writer.

This is why you should strengthen your resolve. By doing so, you will be able to weather any kind of rejection that comes your way. Remember that there many famous writers who were rejected and they had to face a great deal of rejection before they were able to gain any form of success in their own respective careers.


If you are going to be a complete writer, it is important that you know how to handle rejection as a writer effectively. Being a writer is not an easy job. There will be times where your work will be scrutinized and rejected. You should never let this stop you though. With these tips, you’ll be able to handle rejection in a very positive way.

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Flynn Hannan

Flynn Hannan

Bibliophile , Senior Indie Editor at Writers Republic