The recipe for success in life is straightforward. You get qualified, hone your craft, join the industry association, get a blog, and — TA-DA! — it all pays off and you succeed.
Reality, however, often has other ideas.
For example, when I was trying to get my first book published I received over 200 rejections from literary agents before someone took me on. That’s just the agent, mind. That’s before the manuscript even hit the publishers’ desks. Then I went on to a new round of rejections as a succession of publishers turned my manuscript down.
Most of the people I approached didn’t respond. Some agents and publishers tried to soften the blow with “It’s just not right for us” type letters.
Others were, shall we say, less than encouraging.
One of the best-known and most well regarded literary agents in the country took the trouble to write me a personalised letter. Her words will be forever seared into my brain — and my heart.