Saturday, January 11, 2014

Misery loves company

Recently, there were some terrific videos making the rounds on the internet in which children's authors read terrible reviews of their books.

I'm going to confess that I loved these so much because:
a. They were very funny.
b. They made me feel better.

My immediate reaction was:

Oh, phew! Even really GOOD authors get terrible, icky, stupid, crazy-whacko, out-of-left-field reviews.

Misery loves company.

I am not alone in the universe. (Not that I have ever gotten any of those, of course. Just sayin')

So, that experience made me realize how comforting it can be to know that in whatever endeavor we try our hand at, we will be judged.

We won't please everyone.

We will fail from time to time.

We will fall from time to time.

We won't be as wonderful as we want to be.

Some will love us.

Some will hate us.

This is the way the world spins.

I also know that when we first dip our toes into a new experience, we feel vulnerable and unsure.

And when we are rejected, we feel alone.

So, I am dedicating this blog post to all the children's writers out there who are trying their best to write their best and publish a book.

Keep the faith.

You may not achieve success the first time or the 300th time.

But you will never achieve success if you give up.

So...for your reading pleasure, I present: 

My Partial Collection of Rejection Letters. 

Note: I was finally accepted by FSG and have been publishing with them for almost 20 years.


Michelle Cusolito said...

Ah, thank you for these Barbara. This pre-published author who received her first rejection of 2014 on New Year's day appreciates it.

Kirby Larson said...

I stopped counting at 250 rejections-- too discouraging. But the message is to keep after it!

Thanks for sharing this, Barbara!

:Donna Marie said...

Barbara, thanks for taking the time to scan those and share! The one from Holt sounds the same/similar as one I got (though I didn't get up now to find it lol). I'm definitely checking out the videos :D hehehe

Kelly Armfelt said...

Hi Barbara, I plan to begin sharing your posts with my third grade students this week...they are HUGE Barbara O'Connor fans! We started the school year by reading The Fantastic Secret of Owen Jester and now we are exploring How to Steal a Dog (my personal favorite!). We have been having AMAZING discussions about the two books...comparing themes, characters, plot, etc. Would it be possible for my students to email you one or two questions about the books sometime during the next few weeks? Thanks for your consideration. Kelly Armfelt, Third Grade Teacher, Dublin City Schools, Dublin, Ohio

Barbara O'Connor said...

Kathy: Of course! I would love that and will look forward to it. Thanks so much.

Barbara O'Connor said...

Oops. I meant Kelly. Sorry!