Eight or Ten years ago, as a reader,I read mostly best sellers, most of them published by the big publishing houses. Some of them were really good, others not so much. And over the years, as a writer, I submitted my work to publishing houses. And I had some success. My first mid-grade novel was accepted by the first editor who saw it, and I was feeling quite proud. Then my other fiction work collected rejection letters until I submitted an idea for a nonfiction book, got the contract, and and begin writing nonfiction for kids. I didn’t go without a contract unless I wanted to take a break for the next ten years. During that time, I published 20 books for kids, junior hi level and up.
After that, I was contacted about writing Dr. George Blue Spruce’s autobiography and shortly after that Helen Blanchard’s. I saw the Dr. Blue Spruce book though publication with Bison Books, University of Nebraska Press while Ms. Blanchard went the self publishing route. By this time, I had lost my contacts with my nonfiction editors. Some were promoted, and others retired or moved elsewhere. So, I decided to go back to my first love, Christian fiction.
I attended writers conferences and begin hearing the same old story I had heard while attending conferences in the earlier years of my career. “Don’t give give up,” they said as they ran through a list of authors who had been rejected and rejected and rejected. When these authors finally found a home for their work, it often made the best seller list… J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone was rejected 12 times. That was the most current one to make the news at that time, but the list of best sellers that were rejected by agents and editors many, many times is very long. If you want to see the mind-blowing numbers, go here: https://lithub.com/the-most-rejected-books-of-all-time/
In the beginning, I found this encouraging because I was a wanna-be author and looked for encouragement anywhere I could find it. If editors and agents said it, I believed it because I had a dream I wanted to follow. But later, with a few years experience after publishing twenty-two books plus hundreds of newspaper and magazine articles, my eyes suddenly opened! Agents and editors often reject books that readers love! And so, Reader me has found many, many books written and published by independent authors that I love! (And Writer Me has become an independent author publishing books I hope some of you will love!)