A Chance Meeting With a Message for Me About Rejection

“A rejection is nothing more than a necessary step in the pursuit of success.”

~Bo Bennett 

I met someone at the Starbucks today as I sat down to the blank page of my computer screen wondering what I was going to write this post about today.  She is a fellow author and I saw her come in with her box of books of her debut novel, Murder by Ice.  She walked right up to the cashier at the counter and after ordering her coffee asked if she could sell her books here.  I thought to myself ‘she’s not even afraid that they’ll say no, why aren’t I like that.’  She sat at the table where I was sitting as she waited for the cashier to talk to the manager and get a response back to her and we began talking.  

I asked her how she gets up the nerve to do that.  I promptly began to explain how hard it was for me to just get out and talk to people to get them to buy my book as I handed her the postcard for my novel, The Diary: Succession of Lies.  I know funny right.  I’m talking about how hard it is for me to promote myself and my book as I am whipping out the postcard for my book (I didn’t even realize what I was doing while I was doing it).  She asked where my book was but it just so happened that I left the box of books at home and she immediately got on me.  I explained that sometimes I just don’t feel like anyone’s going to buy it so I just don’t bring it with me.    

We talked for over an hour about many different things and she asked me why I found it so easy to show my card about my book to her but can’t go out and do the same with other people.  I told her that it was easy to do that with people who I knew were writers as well.  Writers know the painstaking efforts we each go through, not just to write the book but to get it edited and published and selling.  I told her that with other writers I feel less of a chance of getting rejected.  

She said to me in essence that rejection comes with the territory of being a writer (which I am all too familiar with) but also that just because someone doesn’t buy my book right then and there that it is not necessarily rejection.  Sometimes just their knowing about your book and the story it tells may make them think about it and go buy it later.  However, if I never tell anyone then no one ever goes back to buy it later.  

Rejection is just so scary and it, at times, makes you feel like you are not good enough.  It can make you doubt yourself.  I mean obviously I know that everyone is not going to always like what I write or publish it but it still stings a little (a lot actually).  Well as it turns out this lady that I ran into, I already knew her.  There we were talking like strangers and then realizing that I used to hang out with her daughter and that I already knew her.  It was wonderful to run into her because I hadn’t seen her in so long (since I was still a teenager).  

We both realized that there was a reason for both of us coming to this particular Starbucks on this particular day because I started not to go there today but in many ways something was drawing me there.  Now I know that it was to run into this wonderfully, courageous, woman, who at the age of 50 (hope she wouldn’t mind me saying her age) has the nerve and fearlessness of getting out there and promoting herself and her book (her baby as she called it) and for me to be inspired by her actions.    

In just the short time that I talked to her today she reminded me that rejection is nothing to be afraid of and that that fear could even make me better and work harder to accomplish what I want (and need) to get done.  She said to me that we writers are pioneers of inspiration and reminded me that our stories and experiences are meant to be shared with others.  

Even if everyone doesn’t get something out of your shared experiences, there’s always that one person that will.  That one person will be inspired, or motivated, and take your words as lessons and advice for the steps that they take moving forward.  You will be their chance meeting with a message that they never knew they were going to receive.               


Jimmetta Carpenter


The Diary: Succession of Lies (Now Available)

Writing as “Jaycee Durant”







2 thoughts on “A Chance Meeting With a Message for Me About Rejection”

  1. Stumbled across this post, and what a great topic. You definitely have to develop some tough skin if you’re going to write, but it’s really great to remember that rejection doesn’t necessarily mean rejection forever. I was reading some publishing agent’s blog once, and she talked about how even with queries, sometimes she rejects them just because they’re not interesting to her THEN. But she might come across it later and wonder why on earth she did that, or vice versa – she might look at something she had requested material from and, especially if it comes much later than expected, wonder what she was thinking.

    Tastes change! Just gotta keep on goin’.

  2. I read your posts very time an email comes in my in box. In fact they are the only emails I always open as soon as they arrive. I am 48 and have two books and I always have at least one of each in my car or bag, because you never know when the opportunity will come up to have someone say “yes.”

    The reason i love your posts is that I go through the same doubts and worries and yet you always turn them around with honesty and an attempt to find a more positive focus. There is a sense of courage and determination every day, that I need to learn from.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s