So sang Madonna. Is she right? As a writer, rejection comes with the territory. Look at J K Rowling: it took over ten years before she was finally accepted for publication (and even then, only when she dropped the gender specific name and went with initials…). Her crime fiction was floundering until it was revealed she was writing it.
It’s easy to think that once you get a publishing contract, you’ve made it. You’re a published author and no longer “just” a writer. But there are still rejections. Plenty of them. The trick is how you react to them. I’ve made my latest rejection into something positive: free fiction! I submitted the story “Heart Halfway Gone” to a romance call anthology. I think maybe I don’t actually write romance. It doesn’t seem to come as naturally on the page as it does in real life. Anyhoo, rather than just dropping it as a PDF, I had some creative fun with it…designed a proper cover, created MOBI and ePub files, and a proper PDF with the cover design. I had a great time, and the pain that comes with rejection dissipated. My website stats boomed, and people got some free fiction that hopefully, they enjoyed.
My point? Never lose hope. You write because you have to; because you want to; because you love to. Not because you want to be published (although that is one hell of a ride). Write what you love, and some people will love what you write. Rejection might not be the greatest aphrodisiac, but it steels the soul and strengthens the heart.
Stick with it. Writing is for love, not for money or accolades.