Thursday, November 4, 2010

Here's to Re-posts and Rejections

Okay, so I'm a little late on getting my bloggy grove back on. So, I'm doing a re-post. 

I wrote this about two years ago (Oh man! Two years?) But I still find it fascinating!

If you haven’t heard the song, Pork and Beans, by the rock band Weezer, you'll need to check it out (embedded above).
“What?” you say, “does Weezer have anything to do with writing?” I will tell you, but first I want to contemplate rejection. *putting hand up to chin in thoughtful pose*

Did you know that Stephen King got so many rejection letters that he nailed them on a spike under a board in his bedroom? When he tried to get Carrie published, the publisher said, “We are not interested in science fiction which deals with negative utopias. They do not sell.”

Dr. Seuss’s work was rejected over fifteen times before he found an editor to even look at his work.

Madeleine L’Engle was rejected by twenty-six publishers before A Wrinkle in Time was picked up. It is now in it’s sixty-ninth printing.

J.K. Rowling was rejected by nine publishers for Harry Potter. Nine times!!!! Wha....?

What does this mean? Anyone who is in the writing field or publishing field will tell you, rejection is a part of writing. It is at every turn. Critique groups, publishers, editors, …the list goes on and on. But take heart you are not alone!

Which brings me back to the band Weezer.

Weezer was working with a label who wanted them to write catchier songs to make themselves more marketable (according to the producers), and rejected many of the songs they had been working on. Weezer left the them and with the inspiration of the meeting that day wrote the hit Pork and Beans.

Their video had 3.5 million views before even appearing on MTV.

So here's to rejection!  Whoop! It only leads to success.

Have any of you had a time when you were rejected, but kept working until the fabulous day came?

36 comments:

Shari said...

Hi Carolyn. That was a fun song. It's so true--the rejection thing.

Patti said...

I need to have more fun with rejection. Great song.

Mary Campbell said...

I Carolyn. I love that video and song. Did you know that all the people on that video came from you tube? They were all people who made strange video's for you tube and their videos went viral. So not only was it Weezer who got a millions of hits after being rejected. All the people in the video have received millions of hits just by being themselves.

Tess said...

And 'A Wrinkle in Time' will be coming out as a graphic novel in 2012 (I think that's when it comes out)....how cool is that?

Quinn said...

It's comforting toknow that all these successful writers started out getting rejections too.

Vicki Rocho said...

I borrowed my daughter's IPOD for the gym one day and that song was on there. Loved it!

How sweet it must be to succeed at something after all those rejections! Kinda like thumbing your nose back at 'em isn't it?

Candyland said...

That's awesome! I didn't know that about Weezer. It's inspiring that famous, successful authors got the big R!

Amparo Ortiz said...

Love it!! Perseverance pays off, my friend. And if Weezer isn't proof enough, I don't know what is.

Here's to hoping we have the same success!!

Summer Ross said...

I really enjoyed that video! and I've had 10 rejections before I got my fist bite.

Jennifer Shirk said...

Oh gosh, so many times after a rejection I would think, "Why am I torturing myself? Obviously this is not for me." But then I would get an idea or still like my wip and keep working.
Hang in there.
PS. LOVE Wheezer!

Sara B. Larson said...

OH man, wanna talk rejections? Yep, I have a huge stack of 'em. Well, mostly an email server full of them. I'd have to print them off to make a stack. And that was just to get an agent. No, the rejection never ends, but I believe if you never give up, you will make it. I have an agent. Now I just need it to work with an editor! :)

Al said...

There's hope for all of us then!

Angie said...

Great post. I've had more rejections than I can count! I learned recently that a studio rejected the Beatles at their audition because "guitar bands are on their way out." The Beatles??? They must have seriously kicked themselves later.

L.T. Elliot said...

I love that song. =D

Excellent post. Excellent song. Excellent you.

Jolene Perry said...

LOVE WEEZER!!!
A very timely post for me thanks!

Shannon O'Donnell said...

Well, with the # of rejections I've been collecting, I must be getting close by now. Good news!! :-)

Amanda Sablan said...

Great song and great post! It's definitely comforting knowing that the almighty Rowling and King got rejection letters.

I sent out my first batch of queries earlier in the year only to realize too late and after many rejections that my book was not actually finished. So now I'm in revision mode again because I know I'll make it. :)

Creepy Query Girl said...

thanks I needed this! My querry letter has already gotten four rejections since I sent it out two weeks ago. Ewe.

Terry Stonecrop said...

I always love hearing stories about famous writer rejections. It gives us all hope:)

Sharon K. Mayhew said...

Great post...You just have to kee saying I think I can I think I can...and keep on trying. :)

Kathryn Magendie said...

This made me grin -- :-D

And yeah, rejection is a part of it -- and I can tell you from the pov of an author and an editor: it sucks to get them AND send them - but I know from sending them how many good stories have to be rejected because of lack of space or maybe the story just needs a little more work or maybe we just published a story too similar the issue before -- so many maybes! Authors can drop through the cracks - once there was a story I didn't care for but my co-editor did - I took a second look at it and thought "omg -why did I pass this up! it's wonderful!" was it my mood? was I distracted while reading it? Who knows . . . so much can go wrong, but then, one day things just go right -you just have to plug away with a dose of reality, of course!

Medeia Sharif said...

I love Weezer!

Those rejection stories were helpful during my querying process.

Lynn said...

I've always liked the Stephen King story. I try to remember that rejection slips mean closer to publication. They are steps in the process!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Good for Weezer! And yes, I worked through my rejections.

Jen Daiker said...

I'll be looking for this post in the future when I get rejected for the first time, I'll have to learn to take it with a grain of salt and have fun with it. Today I'm thankful I haven't experienced it... yet.

salarsenッ said...

((hugs)) Yeah, and did you know that one of Stephen King's English professors at the University of Maine told him...um...he couldn't write for sh!t and he had no talent. Blah......

TerryLynnJohnson said...

perfect timing to remind me that rejections are part of the game. Thanks!

Carolyn Abiad said...

Thanks...I was suffereing from analysis paralysis today and this kicked me into gear.

Anne said...

I still waiting for day-fabulous but I'm not losing hope any time soon.

Lola Sharp said...

I loves me some Weezer. :)

Rejection is just a step closer to acceptance. :)

I hope you are cranking out your revisions.

LeishaMaw said...

Great post. Now I will go about my day singing about Pork and Beans. :) And sticking my tounge out at rejection.

ali said...

ROFL! That is *awesome*!!!

Elana Johnson said...

Oh, man, yes. It's so true that it takes a lot of rejection before you get to the end of the rainbow. I'm living proof.

Talei said...

Absolutely! Here's to rejections, they will make us stronger and more determined. I'm off to find a nail to hammer to the floorboard. It may come in handy. All those great names eh? ;)

Shelley Sly said...

Thank you for this inspiring post! Mary (the third commenter above) is correct: the people featured in the video are You Tube stars who may have felt "rejected" in their own sense (laughed at, ridiculed) but now have their chance to shine. I love the positive message!

Kimberly said...

Oh I just love this. Brilliant! Yours is a lovely blog to delve into and savour!