Received my first honest-to-goodness rejection letter today. Signed, sealed and delivered.
The surprising thing was how good it felt. Twisted, I know, but maybe it was just the relief of knowing, of being freed to move on to other possibilities. (Was I just a teeny bit stressed about actually getting a writing contract with Random House and having to write another book?) Or maybe it was just one of God's tender mercies–that I could feel relief rather than devastation.
In any case, a few moments later, a woman showed up at my door with a large bouquet of flowers. I looked at her and in the split second it took her to ask for the true recipients (who live three doors down) I thought to myself, Oh no! Why is someone sending me flowers!? And I had that momentary panic-induced sense of paralysis that feeling indebted to someone for something I didn't need or want brings on.
So there you go. My writing was summarily dismissed by one of the largest publishing firms in the nation and nobody sent me flowers and I was absurdly glad about both occurrences. Made my day.
I never claimed to be easy to please.