What to Do After Your Story Has Been Killed

Let’s say you landed a pitch (hooray!) and after all the effort you put into the research, reporting and writing — the piece gets rejected. What’s your next move?

It can be hard to pick yourself up after your story gets killed. It’s easy to take it personally — but there are countless reasons why your story didn’t make it to publication, and it may have nothing to do with your writing. It could be a time issue, internal changes at the magazine or it could be a new editor who just doesn’t care for your topic.

The latest Mediabistro feature looks at what you should do when your hard work doesn’t make it into the book. Here’s an excerpt:

Be prepared to take responsibility for any shortcomings or misunderstandings. Most importantly, be able to learn from the situation. Not every editor is willing to be your mentor, but some are willing to give you feedback as to why something won’t or didn’t work. And whatever you do, don’t be overly apologetic. You’ll only appear desperate and needy to the editor, which doesn’t bode well if you hope to work with him or her again. I learned the hard way that editors simply don’t have patience for it. Instead, thank them for the opportunity and assure that you’ll apply the lessons from the experience to future assignments.

For more advice on how to move forward, read: 6 Things to Do After Your Story Has Been Killed.

— Aneya Fernando

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