Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Adventures in Rejection: Cate Hates Her Eyebrows

I am obsessed with my eyebrows.

If this is an exaggeration, it’s only a small one. I’m forever checking to see if I’ve grown a unibrow overnight; those little hairs above the bridge of my nose are such a pain to pull out, and they sprout as if from nowhere at any time they feel ready--which could be the middle of the night or the middle of the day. They’re hair; they have no sense of the spinning of the Earth or the passage of minutes and hours.

To draw an unlikely parallel, this is sometimes how it feels to wait for responses to submissions. I get the same sense of discomfort when no word whatsoever arrives from editors, and then suddenly I am ambushed by a rejection letter while I’m checking my e-mail during my lunch break. Hearing “no” for the thousandth time is like finding a dark, coarse hair smack in between your brows when you freshen your makeup mid-afternoon: it’s embarrassing, discouraging, and frustrating.

Yet we must remain vigilant about sending our work in for consideration. Even if you don’t care that your eyebrows meet in the middle, creating a swarthy bridge above your eyes, you’re going to care if your words never see the light of day. Because we’re writers, and half the point is to share our art with others, whether they have beautiful eyebrows or not.


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