Becoming Published: The Process Focuses on Rejection

My goal is to publish my work. To help ensure my success, I read The First Five Pages by Noah Lukeman. From this book, I learned about many pitfalls to avoid; however, the larger insight I gained was about the process of reviewing a submitted manuscript.

While agents and publishers may want to select books that will be great successes, the process focuses on rejection. An agent or publisher looking at a manuscript seeks a reason, any reason, to reject the work. When use of a question mark in the manuscript is grounds for instant rejection (according to Lukeman), it seems to me that the entire process becomes suspect.

The lesson learned is that rejection has nothing to do with the quality of the work or what success the work might have once published. Luck is the name of the game, and the odds are stacked against the writer. The only recourse is stubborn persistence.

Kathryn Stockett’s The Help was rejected 60 times. After three and a half years of rejections, persistence paid off; the book was finally published. The Help became a bestseller and a hit movie, but 60 different people found an excuse to reject the manuscript.

Tough tasks ahead I face, but I will succeed because I too am persistent.

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