The 2 P’s Every Writer Needs: Patience and Perseverance

Every writer needs to develop patience and perseverance.

You submitted your manuscript to several publishers simultaneously. But that was 3 months ago and you haven’t heard a word.

You submitted your book to a contest, but winners won’t be announced for another 6 months.

Then after all that waiting you get nothing but rejection letters and your contest entry didn’t even make the short list.

Disappointing to say the least…discouraging and even heartbreaking at worst.

What’s a writer to do?

Develop patience and perseverance.

Waiting is as much a part of the publishing world as ants are to a picnic (and just as irritating). It’s hard to wait, especially when it means a potential publishing contract or a book award is in the balance. But we have the choice to manage that time of waiting in a positive or negative manner.

Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary defines patience as “the capacity, habit, or fact of being patient.” And patient means “bearing pains or trials calmly or without complaint” (emphasis mine).

Publishers need time to review the many submissions they get every month. And contests have to allow time for authors/publishers to submit their books—and for the judges to read the hundreds of submissions. Rather than complaining while we are waiting, we can turn our attention to

  • The next project
  • Building our platform
  • Developing our marketing strategy
  • Learning more about our craft.

And when we get rejection letters or fail to win a contest, we apply perseverance, “continued effort to do or achieve something despite difficulties, failure, or opposition.” (Merriam-Webster)

We can

  • Examine our manuscript and ensure it is the best we can make it
  • Hire a professional editor
  • Enlist beta readers and revise accordingly
  • Revisit the feedback from our critique group and make revisions
  • Submit our manuscript to another group of publishers.

All writers, at one point or another in their career, face these experiences. They succeed because they apply patience and perseverance.

Want to get published but don’t know where to start?

Frustrated and overwhelmed with trying to get published? I can help put an end to that. Email me today at Deb [at] DebraLButterfield [dot] com for more details.


  1. Thanks for the words of encouragement!

  2. Thank you for these encouraging words! Marketing strategy is becoming my worst nightmare!

    • I know marketing is often the toughest part of the process for many writers. You might be trying to do too much. Do you have a written strategy and plan for each book? If not, that’s where you need to start. Otherwise you are blindly shooting arrows.

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