I heard recently from a friend whose sister applied to Storyknife and didn’t get in. I wrote back as follows.
Please do tell your sister to apply again. We had 599 applicants last year, it was tough. There are even more this year (our poor adjudication committee). In some ways this is very gratifying, but we’ve only got six cabins and inevitably more writers get turned down than accepted.
Tell her I have coined a phrase: “To be a writer is to embrace rejection as a way of life.”
I have never written anything more true. I probably never will. In the beginning my submissions to New York publishers returned like homing pigeons. I had to self-publish Silk and Song before I found someone across the pond who didn’t recoil in horror at publishing something unKate with my name on it. I’m currently suffering through a sea change in publishing homes and I’m having to try to sell all over again three collections of short pieces in e and audio.
There is no point in the writing life, especially for someone who doesn’t hit “the list” regularly or ever, when rejection is not a part of our lives.
But keep asking. Because sooner or later someone will say yes, which will prove sweeter than all the no’s put together.
Case in point:
Author and founder of Storyknife.org.