Many potentially great writers have enough enthusiasm and energy to keep Olympic torch going for next thousand years. They are “writing” in their minds 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Months on end, their mind is fast at work with fantastic ideas, characters, and then - bottom falls out.
They sent in that manuscript, or submitted that query and it came back “Sorry, it doesn’t fit our current publication needs.” Yes, a rejection is a turn-down whether publisher uses kind words or just a form letter. In other words, our perfect attempt at literature was not perfect. It didn’t hit that “publish me” target with these publications or editors.
Then these souls that have labored untold hours and typed, retyped, and typed again are devastated. They cannot, will not, and “you can’t convince me for all money at Fort Knox” to continue writing.
Why do we base perfection on one, two, or even three opinions? What you wrote, thinking it was your “best to date” is exactly that! It is YOUR best to date, and you are pleased with it as you should be. It is where you were at that particular moment of your writing life. It was perfection at 9:23 a.m. on Monday, fourth of November. Leave it at that and start on your next piece of perfection.
Should you attempt to change or modify what you wrote and that was rejected? Of course, because it still has opportunity to be perfection on whatever day in time you finish it for second, third, or how many other times. The most important step here is that you went ahead, didn’t sell all your pencils and paper, and moved forward, not backward, and not stood still.
When a child is born that is far less than perfect, parents and all those involved in this mystery of life, must find a way to bolster their attempt at making best of a “less than perfect” situation. This, of course, is a far more tragic undertaking than what a writer faces with a rejection. But we can learn so much from those that face walls that are made of concrete, while ours are simply plaster. The families of these children that world has labeled “less than perfect” are still proud of their perfect little boy or girl. To them, at moment they are holding him/her in their arms, they are totally perfect. They are most precious, wonderful miracle that two people can create. They will love and be proud of this example of their love each subsequent moment, at that particular moment, even when hurdles come along. When child attempts something and cannot do it, they will be proud of their attempt. When they take a “baby” step in right direction, they will applaud their efforts. When they fail completely, they will hold them tight and love perfect way they tried at that moment.
You see, only you can equate perfection in your writing. If you are pleased, then writing is pleasing. If you gave it all you had, everything you could muster, then it is perfection. It will never be “perfect” to everyone, every single time, and every single moment in time.