Case in point: yesterday. I sent out a bunch of queries yesterday; a “bunch” being exactly five. Last one was sent around 3 p.m., EST.
At 8 p.m., EST, I received an email from one of the agents I’d queried a few hours before. Thanks but no thanks. Not my cuppa. Better luck next time.
Of course, she didn’t call me a sucker but I felt like one last night . . . for all of two seconds. Then I pulled myself up by the bootstraps, thinking, At least I’m not stuck in a holding pattern. At least I’m not going to be waiting and hoping. Actually, it’s kind of nice for that agent to be on the ball like she was. I chalked it up to ‘nothing ventured, nothing gained.’ I thought I handled the rejection pretty well. Truth be told, I was rather proud of myself.
But this morning I woke up in a foul mood–no, not foul, exactly. Irritated. I couldn’t figure it out, so I blamed it on this and that: the kitchen floor needed washing, folks usurped my time; you name it, I was irritated by it. For hours, my brow perpetually knit; my sentences came out clipped. The dark clouds outside my window slipped in, jostling for position right over my head.
And then it hit me.
Actually, it hit me because of an email I received from somebody who apparently knows me better than I know myself. After confiding that my day was somewhat shitty, I casually mentioned that agent’s rejection, to which she replied:
Ah, and now we come to the root of your irritation. I figured it would be something like a rejection.
But as soon as I heard that, I knew she was right. Dammit! Not ‘dammit, she was right’ but ‘dammit, here I go again, crying and complaining because I got a rejection, ONE REJECTION.’ Letting it ruin the bulk of my day–my Saturday, for crying out loud. And how many of my blog posts have been dedicated to growing a thicker skin, keeping the faith, promising myself I wasn’t DOING that any more?
The little girl walking along the edge of that cliff is doing so at great personal risk. The path she’s on has to be scary as fuck, and I doubt she’d be on it if she didn’t have to be. If she falls, she’s dead. But she’s walking it, putting one foot in front of the other.
Compared to hers, my path is a cake walk. I’m on it only because I choose to be. I have loads of support. If I fall, I get up, brush myself off and keep going, but only if I wanna. So what if one agent rejected my query–it’s not the end of the world. For the love of god, quit acting like it is.