Rejection is a thing that happens to writers who seek publication. Getting a story rejected is a sad thing. It hurts. Rejection is universal, but that fact does not make the feeling suck any less. Because you have already been rejected or will be rejected at some point in the future, here are a few things to keep in mind regarding the word “no.”

There are different ways to react to rejections, just as there are different kinds rejections. People that submit to literary magazines and publishing houses often categorize rejections as either “personal” or “form,” which gives us a starting point.

Groovy. Now that we’ve had fun with both personal and form rejections, let’s talk about why your story was rejected, or, what “Unfortunately, this piece is not for us” really means.

Now, there is no way to know why you received a form rejection. Of course, you can always take a closer look at the magazine and see if your story doesn’t fit in terms of style or content, but you can also end up at a loss for an explanation. In this case, there are a few things to do.

The long and short of it is that no matter how you look at it, rejection is a thing that writers wish did not happen to them. The truth is, though, that it will, so developing a few strategies to deal with rejection or understanding why stories get rejected may help you rationalize rejections and use them productively. You do not get rejected, your work gets rejected. In this case, no rejection is personal.

Further Reading:

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