Why I love rejection letters


My friend sent away an application for a job a few weeks ago. She worked super-hard on her resume, wrote a fantastic letter and generally took the time to do a really great job. I asked her the other day, "Have you heard back from them?"

"Not a word," she said.

Hello? People out there? What has happened to rejection letters? Why does no one send them any more? Why do we not have enough time anymore to thank people for applying or submitting or showing an interest?

I love rejection letters. I really do. I don't love them for the rejection part, obviously. Like Snoopy, I would prefer the $50,000. But I love it when someone takes the time to say, "Hey, thanks for the submission/story/query letter, but I'm going to say no." 

I *don't* love it when what I spend my time on disappears into the postal system or the internet ether and is never seen or heard from again. It makes me feel like a nothing, like a non-person. I'm not even worth rejecting. 

"If you haven't heard from us within 6 weeks, please assume we are not interested in your submission," is what most publishing companies write on their websites. It makes me sad, desperate, angry. Really? You can't send one line? You can't even tell me to push off and never apply again?

I treasure my rejection letters. Perhaps I should do like Snoopy and save them up to make a quilt. The problem is.... I'd only just have enough to make a small hot water bottle cover. And it's not because I haven't sent out hundreds of applications and submissions.

It's because no one has the manners or resources to reject me properly.

Rejection is part of life. You can't possibly get through your 80-something years without it. Also, you're probably going to have to reject other people at some stage. Either that or you have zero boundaries. Just make sure to do it kindly and politely. Or even, to do it at all.