How to Turn Rejection into Motivation

This guest post is by Valerie Strawmier of

Dealing with rejection is not a skill I ever counted on trying to perfect.

However, if I planned on writing anything beyond a personal diary, it was going to come up sooner or later.

Now, instead of running from it, I’ve learned to embrace it in a way. There’s a reason why writers have an “audience.”

My writing is not going to appeal to everyone, but there will be a market for it.

If we write for our readers in a specific niche, then rejection will become less of an issue over time.

1. Learn from Every Rejection

So does that mean we can ignore every rejection we see?

Should we assume our writing is just not for them and continue on?


There is something to be learned in every one of these rejection experiences.

2. Write for the Audience

One of the main reasons editors reject work is because it’s not right for their audience. As writers, we should do our research before submitting our work to anyone.

Find out what their previous publications looked like, what the tone was and how they communicate in general. If we match it up correctly, our chances of being accepted increase immediately.

3. Following Technical Guidelines

Rejection can also occur because the writer didn’t follow the right guidelines.

If like me, your eyes glaze over when you start to read the technical guidelines, we need to sit up and pay attention.

There’s a reason editors lay out the margins, line spacing and so forth.

It saves them a ton of work and if a writer can’t follow simple instructions, why should the editors review the submission at all?

4. Timing of the Submission

Another reason for rejection might be the timing of the piece, especially if it’s a seasonal article. There are certain times of the year when editors accept holiday pieces, and others when they just take up space on their desk.

Make sure you ask about the submission timing for seasonal or newsworthy pieces as this might be a short window of time. If you can’t write it quickly or early enough, it may be a waste of time for the editors to deal with.

So what do you do about it?

Now that we understand some reasons why editors might reject our work, what do we do about it?

When you’re reading that letter, don’t let your stomach get in a knot.

Take everything from an objective angle and use their advice to become a better writer.

Even professional baseball players have off days where they don’t hit a home run, and we as writers have off days as well.

If this piece fits into that category, fix it and move on. Don’t automatically assume they didn’t understand it.

Look at it from their perspective and try to understand their point of view. If you look at things through someone else’s glasses for a moment, you may see an item you missed before.

Use this as encouragement and motivation to pay more attention next time, do better research and write for that particular niche. Once you’ve mastered this art, you won’t have to fear rejection.

Rather, it will become a step up to bigger and better writing projects!

When was the last time you turned rejection into a positive experience?

Share your stories with us here!

Valerie Strawmier is a freelance blogger and writer who loves to help people reach their writing dreams! Visit to read more and you can also follow her on Twitter @Miss_Wordy.

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