First, thank you, Veterans, for your service! We appreciate you!
Now, I think it’s time for some real-life examples of rejected manuscripts…that were published!
My client, Sarah Sundin, spent seven years pitching and perfecting her WWII historical romance A Distant Melody. She received many positive rejections. Publishers and agents wrote back to her and told her that her writing was good but historicals weren’t selling.
Sarah didn’t give up. She kept revising her manuscript and had hope. Finally, in 2008, she attended the Mount Hermon Christian Writers Conference and met an editor from Revell. The editor and Sarah connected, and the editor requested Sarah’s book.
Revell loved Sarah’s writing and story and offered her a contract for three books! A Distant Melody released in March 2010 and Sarah’s 13th (I hope I am counting right) book will release in early 2020!
The timing for A Distant Melody was perfect because there weren’t many historicals left on the bookshelves. It was also perfect timing for Sarah. She admits that until 2008 she wasn’t in the right place in her life to publish a book. With young children and a job, the demands of edits, marketing, etc. could have overwhelmed her. For those of you who haven’t yet experienced all that goes into getting the book out after the contract, take note that it’s a lot of work!
And then there’s Dr. Seuss’s story. His first book And to Think That I Saw it on Mulberry Street was rejected 27 times before he ran into an acquaintance–who happened to be an editor at a publishing house–while on his way to destroy the story no one wanted to publish. The editor asked to take a look and took a chance on Theodor Geisel/Dr. Seuss’s book. Seuss is quoted to have said that, “if he had been walking down the other side of the street, he probably would never have become a children’s author.”
Another good publication story is Madeleine L’Engle’s for A Wrinkle in Time. You can read it in her own words here.
There are many stories like this on the internet, so if you ever need encouragement to keep trying, go ahead and search for some more examples. And maybe some of our blog friends can add their stories here. Published authors, please feel free to post your publication story!
Thank you for this encouragement, Rachel. Timing is something truly to marvel. We think this … we think that … But God says this, and God says that. And His this and that are so much better than anything we could’ve planned or hoped to see.
Happy Veterans Day, everyone.
Thank you for this rachel. Some days are harder than others, and encouragement can be so very vital.
I know there are bright roads ahead,
at least, I do believe;
but friends once living now are dead
and it is time to grieve.
I know that they’ve gone on ahead;
at least, I do believe,
and that the tears that I have shed
they will, with God, receive.
I know that they wait there for me;
at least, I do believe,
and beyond the grave there’s victory
that Christ, not we, achieved.
As in the earth their fabric’s cooled,
their permanence becomes bejeweled.
Thank you for this encouraging post, Rachel. And a big thank you to all our Veterans. God bless!
What a pleasant surprise to wake up and find this in my inbox 🙂 Thank you for your encouragement, Rachel! Each year I grow to appreciate God’s timing more and more. Just yesterday I was talking to an aspiring writer, and I told her – as painful as those rejection-letter years were – I wouldn’t trade them for ANYthing! In those years, I learned more about the craft and worked hard on my novels. In those years, I learned more about the publishing industry and met amazing editors, agents, and fellow writers. More importantly, in those years, God taught me important lessons about humility and obedience and faith and trust. So now, when God tells me to wait, remind myself of all this and know he has something good planned – even if I never see it.
What encouragement! I’m holding onto this! Thank you Sarah! (And Rachel!)
Thank you for these words.
I will wait. Do The Next Thing.
Trust that God’s timing is always on time.
I love Sarah’s story. Obedience and trust. That’s what I want too.
A Distant Melody is one of my all time favorite books! Such encouraging stories!
Thank you, Ashley! I’m so glad you enjoyed the story!
Morgan Tarpley Smith
So encouraging!! Thank you for sharing, Rachel!!