As writers, we’re told to gear up for rejection. We await the return of manuscripts, the curt emails, or the phone calls from our weary agent (if we’re lucky enough to have one).
And for authors entering genres with rules and tropes to live up to—like science fiction or horror, for instance—the entry gates can be especially difficult to get through.
For whatever reason, it seems that some of the greatest literary talents—F. Scott Fitzgerald, Rudyard Kipling, Ursula Le Guin, Sylvia Plath, J.K. Rowling, and many, many more—have had their work rejected (and sometimes a lot) before finding an editor and publishing house willing to give them a chance. But when each of them were given one, they went on to sell millions of books, win countless awards, and inspire thousands of readers.
Below are just a few writers whose rejections may inspire you to keep pushing, even if it means getting your manuscript a little dirty (see below).