The New York Times Makes Me A Writer

Look what I got! Now I am officially a “Writer,” because a leading publication passed on my essay. I can’t possibly be a bona fide writer until I get a string of rejections, and with the below email, I am on my way.

Now, I can brood about how misunderstood my “art” is and talk in hushed tones about suffering, while drinking hard liquor from a sifter. (It’s possible I confused writer with alcoholic.)

I will note that Mr. Jones’ email arrived on the same day we received information about 2 schools that put us on their waitlists. For those of you counting along at home, that was essentially 3 rejections in one day. I was actually happy that Mr. Jones emailed me, because the fine print of the NYT says only that if you don’t hear from them within 4 weeks, then assume your essay was not chosen. As fortune would have it, I do not have to assume; I know.

I will later post the essay FOR FREE on this blog, which is good for you, gentle readers, because you have to pay for the privilege of reading the NYT, and true art, like the pages of this blog, is free.

It would have been excellent to get editorial feedback from Mr. Jones, et al. But for now, I will console myself with the knowledge that I put myself out there, which was brave and energizing. I only experience the faintest tinge of consolation when I think about how print newspapers are almost extinct. And, frankly, making editorial decisions like passing on my essay may provide compelling evidence why.


11 thoughts on “The New York Times Makes Me A Writer

  1. I’m delighted you can take in the affirmation from NYT. In my book, you’ve “officially” been a writer . . . for many years! I’m proud of you for stepping out and into the spotlight. Way to go!!!!!!

  2. First of all, a rejection doesn’t make you a writer. You were already one. Secondly, I’ve gotten 10 times the number of rejections that you now have. In fact, I think the Big Six publishers in NYC officially have my mug shot plastered on every corporate bulletin board and intranet site with a lovely red “X” across it. But I digress …

    Yes, as a writer, you will be rejected, possibly multiple times. But keep in mind some of the most successful writers of our time have gotten the ol’ heave-ho more times than we can probably count. What this rejection does for you is twofold: A) If I know you, it makes you more determined than ever; and B) Lays a nice foundation for that thick skin you will eventually grow.

    Now get back to your computer, laptop, word processor, typewriter, scratchpad, the sidewalk, Post-it notes – or whatever you bang out your posts out on, and get back to writing. (And please, do me a favor and send your essay to a few more publications before you post it on here for FREE.)

    And I’m spent.

  3. Pingback: Something Good Happened: How The Hell Do You Talk About That? | Outlaw Mama

  4. Pingback: From The Not All About Me File: Learning To Celebrate Others’ Successes | Outlaw Mama

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