“Here’s what you do: In that first hour of rejection, when your liver is exploding and your spleen is on fire, you grope your way through the house to where you keep your ‘charming note’ stationery. . . . Try writing something like ‘Thanks for the bracing experience of your rejection slip!  It made me rethink my story once again.  I’ll be sending you another one in three weeks or so.  Because my greatest dream is to see my work in your pages.  Maybe next time I’ll get a genuine signature on that slip!  Or maybe you’ll say yes.  Wouldn’t that be cool?  Yours sincerely.’  Write it, fold it, address it, stamp it, send right back on the same day you get the rejection.

“I can’t tell you how important this is, how utterly unfrivolous in intent.  This simple thank you for the rejection is one of the highest forms of spiritual aikido I can think of. . . .

“The only real message it sends is I’m not dead, thank you very much!”

Carolyn See, Making a Literary Life (NY: Random House, 2002), 91-3.


3 thoughts on “Tuesday’s woo

  1. “spiritual aikido”

    I practiced aikido for several years (a long time ago), and the philosophy behind it is so fantastic! I loved the practice.

    But I didn’t love the fact that I spent so much time training with people (especially men) who rarely washed their gi (the white training uniform). And also my sensei was kind of crazy. So I quit going to class.

    But any kind of spiritual aikido sounds good to me!

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