Rule 11. Not everything you write is gold. Sometimes it’s crap. Unless you’re Midas, then even your crap is gold, but only if you touch it. Stop touching your crap. That’s weird.

So, you’ve just finished a work in progress. You think it’s the best thing you’ve ever written. You send it out and it comes back rejected. Okay, fine. You send it out again. And again. And again.

What’s going on? Why isn’t the best thing you’ve ever written selling? Well, there could be a number of reasons like not following standard manuscript format, sending it to the wrong market or… it really isn’t the best thing you’ve ever written.

It happens. When we finish a story, it’s our baby. Everyone loves their children. Well, most everyone. My father… he never… he was… oh, never mind. The point is it’s hard to be objective about your own work.

Not everything you write is going to be golden.

There are ways to get around this. Join a critique group, or at the least have some first readers who don’t care about hurting your feelings. They’ll let you know if your gold is really pyrite.

Despite all this, your story still might not sell. It might be time to trunk your story and move on. This might be the hardest thing to accept. Your Precious is not the One Ring to rule them all. But take heart. Having written something that doesn’t sell isn’t a wasted effort. Every time you write you learn, you hone your skills, and improve your craft. Every time you write you grow as a writer.

And that is golden.


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