• Sofiya Pasternack

Rejection and Publishing

How ADHD sucks the joy out of trying.

Don't get me wrong. ADHD can be very useful for Creative Types. But sometimes... it's hard.

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I was undiagnosed and untreated for most of my life. It was only when I went to school to get a doctorate in psych that I went, "Uhhhh do I have ADHD?" And it turned out that YES! I did!

In this post, we'll go through these things:

Rejection is Hard

Rejection Sensitive Dysphoria

What To Do

Rejection is Hard

Rejection is tough for anyone. It's always unpleasant to hear that someone doesn't like the thing you're super excited about or proud of. Sometimes that rejection can even be of you, the person.


Publishing is absolutely full of rejection at every turn. Even before you start querying agents, you have to deal with the rejections of beta readers or critique partners who don't like your work. If you try to apply to an MFA or other writing program, you might get rejected from that. Some writing retreats require an application that can be rejected. It's everywhere!

Then it's time to query an agent, and this is super tough in regards to rejection. Some agents send form rejections, some send personalized rejections, and some send nothing at all. Just silence. Does silence equal rejection? Well... sometimes. It depends. Maybe? Not always. But yes. Also no.

You get an agent and you think your days of being rejected are over! But HA! No! The rejection has only just begun! Now your agent sends your manuscript to editors, and they become the new rejectors of your work. Or maybe an editor loves your work but they have to compete with four other editors for a single book slot, and they don't get that slot. So they have to reject you even though they like your book. What??

After you get an editor, you get your book all nice and pretty and then it gets published. Hooray! Who's gonna reject you now? The book is published! Oh wait. Reviewers are going to reject it? Readers--the people you wrote the book for in the first place--are rejecting it?

And then you want to publish a second book. And the cycle of rejection begins anew.

Does the rejection ever end??

Rejection Sensitive Dysphoria