“Let everything happen to you – Beauty and terror – Just keep going. No feeling is final.”
― Rainer Maria Rilke

I can’t get over this quote. How often have I been stuck in a negative emotion, unable to see past it; believing I would always feel that way. But no feeling is final. It will pass into another feeling.

That is incredibly powerful, both personally and professionally.

Last week my agent checked in with all of the publishers who were considering my rhyming board book. Not long after, four had responded with a pass.

Ouch.

Sort of. Yes, my first reaction was disappointment. I sat with it for awhile, and my mind bounced to “Other publishers will probably pass on it too. That’s it for this manuscript.”

But I’ve been doing this for a lot of years so I caught myself and took a breath. What are the facts? We knew going in that the market for board books is not only tough, it’s even tougher if you aren’t also an illustrator and I’m not. This knowledge helped shift my disappointment to one of practical detachment.

Then I thought about how much I love the manuscript and I want to find an editor who loves it as much as I do. That made me smile.

Finally I moved to my belief in “This or something better.” Who knew what the plan was for this manuscript in the bigger picture? Maybe one of the other publishers will accept it. Maybe it’s not the right time. Maybe I’ll turn it into a picture book. What would be different if I did? How would I develop it? Wheels turned, gears clicked…

And suddenly I’d gone from disappointment to excitement about a potential new project. Woop!

I’ll keep you posted on this manuscript’s journey.

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