How to Turn a “No” Into a “Yes”
Every writer will experience rejection throughout the career. It’s how they deal with it that’s the trick. Do you wallow in misery and get mad at the editor or client for not choosing your idea or work? While that may make you feel better in the moment, it isn’t productive long-term.
Instead, think of ways to turn that rejection into an acceptance. You’re probably thinking, “it was rejected. How can this idea or piece of work be turned into an acceptance? You have no idea what you’re talking about—goodbye.”
Hold on—before you leave—give me a minute!
Turning That “No Thank You” Into a Saleable Piece
Don’t give up because one editor isn’t interested in your pitch, query, or submitted work. There are dozens of reasons for rejection. You may not have the experience they were looking for, by using the resources they needed, followed the guidelines closely enough, understood their premise . . . the list goes on.
Instead of beating yourself up, look at your pitch or submission with a critical eye, and see where it can improve. Then, repurpose it into:
- A pitch for a new market or potential client.
- One or two ideas (or more?) for blog posts, articles, or white papers depending on the content.
- An “on-spec” article for a platform like nDash or ContentGather, which are sites where you can sell articles about any topic of your choosing.
- Topics for your blog or Medium posts if the content is relevant.
Why Am I Writing About This?
I received two rejections on pitches—one yesterday and one this morning. It’s been a long time since I’ve received a rejection. Instead of taking it personally or getting upset, I decided to turn those “no’s” into “yes” opportunities. One of the rejections surprised me because I followed the guidelines to the letter and I’ve written a book on the topic they’re requesting. However, I’m not going to let it get to me because I know I’m knowledgeable about the topic, and I can do well with it on nDash’s content platform.
The second rejection surprised me more. The main reason is that the potential client initially sent me an acceptance. Then, they sent me a message stating they accepted my pitch prematurely and not to accept the offer to begin writing. That has never happened to me in my twenty years of writing. However, this is a newcomer to the field. So, I can’t get upset with them. Instead, I’m going to chalk it up as them learning the ropes and giving me another opportunity to write about something on-spec somewhere else.
What are your experiences with turning a negative into a positive?