Friday, September 30, 2016

Dealing with rejection

Sting. It still stings a bit, OK sometimes a LOT. Academic rejection. It's that paper you were sure was awesome, or a panel that had a zingy title and great speakers. I had no idea how much rejection would be part of the process.

How do I deal?
  1. Pity party. I take a day or two to feel sorry for myself, get mad at reviewers, or whatever else I need to feel. The key is to limit the time and amount of energy devoted to said pity party.
  2. Reread the reviews. After I have taken a bit of time to get over the initial sting, I hold my breath and really digest the reviews. That initial read is always clouded by the REJECTION. 
  3. Reread the manuscript. Yup, now I typically start to see what the reviewers see. 
  4. Decision time. The manuscript is not tied up anywhere. I research other potential outlets and develop a plan. I reframe the paper entirely, reach out to a co-author who could help add something to the work, or retire the poor dear. 
  5. Act. I try not to let too much dust settle. I want to get the work back into the pipeline. Revamp, rework and revise, and try again.
  6. Hope. After submission, I hope for the best, and begin work on the next project.
How do you deal?

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