WAW: Chaos and the Universe

Writing About Writing: A once-a-week post about some aspect of writing. I’m not an expert; I’m just some guy. Take it with a grain of salt.

I believe that the universe is a realm of meaningless chaos. That sounds depressing, but it actually helps me with my writing.

I got my gabillionth rejection letter yesterday. It was a publication I felt really good about. I thought it was a perfect fit. And yet, there it is in my inbox, another damn rejection letter.

We Get Lots of Rejection

Anyone who’s written for long enough learns that rejection is part of the deal. That doesn’t make it not suck though.

But, at least for me, my belief that the universe is mindless chaos helps me roll with rejection.

I’m Not Crazy, I Swear

The publishing world depends on more than talent. You do need talent; don’t fool yourself into thinking you don’t need to hone your craft. But you also need timing, luck, a change in the weather, an aligning of the stars, the right connection, a virgin sacrifice, etc.

There’s a lot of chaos and a lot of randomness involved. Getting upset about this one rejection – even though it was a publication I felt really, really good about it – isn’t worth my time and energy.

Use What Works

Chaos is what works for me. It’s what picks me up after that stinging rejection and convinces me to march onward. It’s just chaos anyway, right?

But do what works for you. Maybe there is a “plan,” in your view. Maybe the stars really do need to be aligned. Whatever gets you through the sting and gets you to keep writing, keep trying, is good. For me, I like to fall back on my belief that the universe is mindless chaos so there’s no point in spending energy mourning a rejection.


Some resources to help if you’re looking to submit writing.


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