How To Recover From Rejection

Is there anything more difficult for writers than constant criticism and rejection? What do you do when after years of working your best doesn’t feel good enough? This month we share tips from our Script Anatomy Instructors on how to recover from rejection more quickly so you can get to success sooner.

Grow more heads.

That’s right. When it comes to rejection, be a hydra. Every time a “no” chops off your head, channel those emotions into finding 3 new ways to put yourself or your work out there. This will constantly grow your network of contacts so that when you write that next killer script, you’ll know exactly where to send it. – Jeremy Svenson

Have other projects on the go.

I stay motivated by always working on several projects at a time. Because if they hate one, then hopefully someone else will love the other one. I always have scripts and pitches at various stages, that’s how I combat it. – Kevin Townsley

Eat, Sleep, Exercise. Keep your life in balance

Over time, my skin has thickened (a little). But yeah, no one wants to hear “no”,  My heart is constantly breaking from rejection and criticism. Meditation helps. My friends and family. Getting enough sleep. Eating well. Getting some exercise as often as I can. The hard stuff is easier to take when I’m living a balanced life. If you’re dealing with rejection, focus on what you can control. But keep writing! We need your stories – Pamela Garcia Rooney

Take the notes one at a time. And see.

Criticism and notes can sometimes be dispiriting. I find that it’s best to take a beat to process it all, then dive in and really trying to incorporate every note without ruining the house you built. Sometimes that may require knocking down a wall or two, but you know what your story can sustain vs. what it cannot. Trust your instincts.

Sometimes notes simply don’t work, but often they do, if you can find a way to translate them into your own voice and see the good rather than the bad in each suggestion. it seems daunting at first, offensive, but if you take them one at a time, and honor your characters and structure, you might strengthen and clarify your story. – Phillip Van

Mourn, and then move on. 

Keep developing and writing projects so you have always more than a few irons in the fire. Let yourself mourn for a day or two then get back up on the horse. Know that “no” is part of the path to “yes. – Tawnya Benavides Bhattacharya


Written by Susan Sassi

Susan Sassi’s scripts have received recognition from Austin Film Fest, Women In Film, Emerging Writers, CineStory, Fresh Voices, The ‘Breakk’, Stage 32, Genre Screenwriting Contest, and ScreenCraft TV Writing Contest. You can find her satire in The Belladonna, Weekly Humorist, Slackjaw, Widget, Robot Butt, Jane Austen’s Wastebasket, and Greener Pastures. Website | Medium |Twitter

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