>I’ve just send in my second-ever fiction submission (not counting a handful of drabbles published in a long-defunct webzine). The first submission came many years ago, when I knew much less about writing and publishing than I do now. I chose an inappropriate market and didn’t put enough effort into editing, so naturally, it was rejected.

Everyone knows that rejection is difficult. Unfortunately, it’s a fact of life for an author, especially one who’s just testing the waters. It’s easy enough to find suggestions and recommendations for ways to improve the odds of success, but much harder to implement them. Writing workshops, critique groups, “beta” readers, professional editing; at what point does it become too much? When do you reach a point of diminishing returns?

The story I’ve just submitted was originally written as fanfiction, which means that it’s been edited and read in a different form already. For that reason, I chose not to go through the workshop/critique whirlwind this time, ready to accept a rejection if it comes. Call it impatience, but at this point, I’d rather expend the energy on stories that aren’t yet completed. If this submission is rejected, then I’ll decide whether to put in the additional effort to try again.

Eventually, I’ll probably also return to that first story and give it more polish than it had on the first try. It’s a learning process, and I’m fully willing to admit that I’m still a rank beginner.

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