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#BeatRejection Final Recap

As I mentioned last week, this has not been an easy challenge for me and not for reasons I think many would expect.

I went into the challenge in the hopes of finding ways to push myself out of my comfort zone by asking for things I might normally not ask for. I wasn’t keen on the idea of asking for things like a ride in a police car or $100 from a stranger. That just didn’t make sense and seemed silly rather than practical. My hope was to grow and become better at what I already do, so I kept the challenged focused on my current lifestyle.

For the first two weeks I made an effort to ask for things, but that petered out, primarily because I didn’t want to make additional work for myself. Life is already too hectic and it seemed silly to go out of my way to Starbucks just to ask if I could buy coffee for someone. So instead I kept the challenge in the back of my mind while doing everyday tasks. Anytime I got that flutter of nervousness about anything I pushed myself a bit more. It meant saying “no” instead of yes, asking for a more or pushing someone who said no to maybe say yes.

There’s no doubt the challenge changed me. I find that I’m working a little differently. I’m making more phone calls and I’m making more lists. I’ve been a little more aggressive in my work and home life on things that I might normally have let slide. All of that is good.

On the other hand, I’ve also learned that maybe I didn’t really need a challenge like this, that for the most part I’m really not all that afraid of rejection. I’ve always been the sort of person to challenge authority and the way things have always been. Ask contract directors throughout publishing. I drive them crazy.

I’m glad I did the #BeatRejection challenge and I’m really glad it’s over.

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9 comments

  1. I’m so grateful you shared this challenge with your readers. I also didn’t do anything extraordinary; I just tried to push myself past hesitation.

    Interestingly, I found myself doing less apologizing. I tend to be someone who cushions my requests with apologies. I’ve tried to be more confident and less worried about being intrusive.

    Also, it pushed me to query the cream of the crop, and I’m happy to say the results have been good so far. 😉

    Thanks!

  2. This has been fun to follow, though my first reaction was why you would think you needed to do it. From my POV, you’ve got bigger balls than anyone I’ve ever known. I describe you to other writers looking for an agent that being your client is like having my very own pitbull. Good when it’s focused on editors and others in the biz, not so much fun (but effective) when focused on me.

    Just keep on doin’ what you’re doin’. It appears to work.

    😉

  3. I think in a way, Jessica, you had a double challenge. Not only were you challenging yourself but you challenged and encouraged everyone else as well. You’ve done an amazing job, Thank you.

    I’ve spent the last days (mostly panicking) writing and details and editing the first 30 pages of my ms for a contest and they will be ready for the deadline.
    But I’ve been looking at the small print today and while a contest that offers the possibility of publication is good. It is only that, a possibility, there is no feed back offered.
    I think I would prefer feedback than the $50 first prize. Even if they are low on entry numbers. So im not sure if this is the contest for me.

    Being able to consider enteringany contest and not worrying about the result. Is a huge step forward for me. That I’m looking at the pros and cons of a particular one and I’m not hiding under the table.
    What is it they say? Your never to old to learn.

  4. I did it, there is nothing in the contest rules to say entries can’t be entered into other contests or subbed to publishers/agents. Just if they are offered you have to inform them and you’re removed from the contest.
    The rules do say that the ms has to be ready if it is picked for publication or by on of the agents, which means I have a lot of work to do.
    That was the deciding factor, I’m not going to be able to play at this anymore, I’m going to have to make myself work, yes I need to work within my disabilities, but I can’t use them as an excuse.
    Finalists are notified by 11th Dec and winners by 15th January. I’ve only finished the first draft and polished the first 30 pages. The rest needs…everything.

  5. I know this is rather late but I’m emerging from end-of-semester essay and exam nightmares.

    I managed to complete the month. It was tricky at times, and sometimes it was tummy curling actually putting myself out there, but I’m glad I did it. Hopefully I’ll remember this month and be able to continue being brave! Although, like Jessica, I am glad it’s over.

    The last of my #beatrejection actions were:
    Day 27 – heard about a possible job opening as a contract editor for a professional organisation and cold called about it (am being considered so a possible for now)

    Day 28 – asked if I could complete an assessment practical at a later date because of difficulties with school pick-up of the Barbarians (Y)

    Day 29 – emailed my first scene to an Awesome Agent (AA) to see if my voice and tone fit the genre I am writing (Y – and they do which is a relief – and AA proved yet again they are an AA)

    Day 30 – stood my ground and said no when asked to handover more of my work to a colleague (not quite asking for rejection, but I’ve always grit my teeth and done it in the past even though it’s my work and they get paid preparation time for work they didn’t prepare – rather proud of this one, I think the month has definitely helped make me a stronger person)

  6. I received the results of the contest I entered this morning, and although I didn’t make the final I couldn’t be happier.

    I lost a fair few points on grammer, I expected that I didn’t give myself enough time for fixing it let alone polishing it.
    All three judges said the first scene is a little confusing, the other people who have read haven’t, but they have also read the blurb on my website, so I think something in the blurb is clarifying the opening scene. That needs looking at when I go back to it and something adding.
    I did score some 4s and 5s and lots of 3s and out of a possible score from each judge of 130 my totals were 96, 81 and 104. The extra possible 15 points for overall enjoyment, I scored 10.

    Overall, still a lot of work to do, I knew that, but the positive feedback is more than worth the initial fear of entering.

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