You open your email and you are met with the paranormal romance editor's name.
Your heart races. Your hands are sweaty. You roll your eyes and cross your fingers. Then you click.
We're sorry but...
And you stop reading. You have a decision—slam your computer shut and cuss, or cuss and go to Facebook/Twitter.*
*Warning: Facebooking angry is never a great idea. It's like a drunk dial to your entire friends (paranormal romance writers or not) list that will be constantly accessible.
Whether you are conscious of it or not, this moment will define you. Are you a paranormal romance writer who will spend the rest of the day licking your wounds and then spring back to your project limping, but stronger? Or are you a person who lets the rejection crush you? Does the fear of another rejection letter keep you from submitting your paranormal romance again? Or, from checking your email for days?
Fear of failure is a constant enemy...Telling someone that you have fallen short of your goal is one of the most humbling experiences a person can have, yet for a paranormal romance writer it is important.
It keeps you grounded and it makes you stronger.
Every paranormal romance writer in the world is (as author Bob Mayer likes to say) 'on the wrong side of the bell curve.' ‘We are not normal.’ In every author, there is some part of them that tells them they are special and deserving of publication. This drive is called Ego (thank you Freud).
Ego is not bad. In fact, it is the driving force behind most successful people.
I'm not saying that writers are egomaniacal narcissists...In fact, quite the opposite.
Most paranormal romance writers are rejected and beaten so many times that when they become successful, it's amazing that they can do book signings without shirking from peoples' touch.
Ego is the drive that keeps us from stopping, from letting other's opinions and judgement keep us from reaching our goal. Our egos keep us working.
We take a lot of beatings and we face constant 'failure.' But to comfort our bruised egos we must remember that though we will be rejected this is not tantamount to failure. We have already met some level of success—we have had the courage to follow our dreams.