In 2017, I tried an experiment. I set out to obtain 100 rejections. I didn’t quite get there, but I did have a productive year. It’s an experiment I may try again in a few years. For now, I will just leave this record here as a reminder of the lessons learned.
It’s 2017. This year, I am courting rejection. 100 rejections to be exact. Join me as I tally up the cumulative number of poems, stories, essays and residency applications I submit this year. Then cheer me on as I watch the number of rejections rise to 100.
As the rejection tracker below shows, as of July 4th I had made 35 submissions and received 21 rejections. (The first was a real beauty.) Along the way, I picked up three acceptances. (Two from The International Gay & Lesbian Review and one from Room, a publication I’ve been trying to break into for three years.) Now it is time to get back to work. I still have 79 rejections to collect before I reach my goal.
If you are a writer, please join me in this ridiculous task. We can commiserate together. Misery, as you know, loves company and we are in fine company. Check out the links below to learn why so many writers (and other creative types) are courting failure.
- “Why you should aim for 100 rejections a year” by Kim Liao
- “Collect 100 rejections this year” by Emily Carrion
- “Doubling the rejection goal: How I received 215 rejections in 2015” by Laura Maylene Walter
- “What I learned from 100 days of rejection” a TED Talk by Jia Jiang
Tell me: Are you courting rejection in 2017?