10 real rejection letters successful people have received
It’d be stupid to think that everyone who has ever been successful has never faced rejection. Rejection, a word that strikes fear into many a writer, musician, actor. But also something that the very best overcome. Work past. These famous chaps have done exactly that, it might even have made them stronger for it!
Even after publishing the best-selling book series in history, the rejection letters didn’t stop coming for Rowling.
Famed fantasy writer Ursula K. Le Guin posted a rejection letter that calls her book ‘unreadable’ on her web site to remind others to ‘hang in there.’
Comic book artist Jim Lee says then Marvel Comics submissions editor Eliot Brown was ‘dead on’ for rejecting his page samples submission.
When David Foster Wallace submitted his work to literary quarterly The Massachusetts Review, an editor wrote that it ‘would be good to publish such an obviously up-and-coming writer,’ but he felt his work lacking a story.
Before he became famous for masterpieces such as ‘Beetlejuice’ and ‘The Nightmare before Christmas,’ Tim Burton was rejected by Disney.
A Disney representative wrote that the rejection came partly because Burton’s submission may have been “too derivative of the Seuss works to be marketable.”
In 1956, MoMA declined to accept Andy Warhol’s drawing titled ‘Shoe,’ which he gave the museum as a gift.
MoMA now owns 168 pieces by the artist.
After mailing The Atlantic three samples of his work, Kurt Vonnegut received this rejection letter from editor Edward Weeks in 1949.
Kurt Vonnegut Memorial Library in Indianapolis
Weeks writes, “Both the account of the bombing of Dresden and your article, ‘What’s a Fair Price for Golden Eggs?’ have drawn commendation although neither one is quite compelling enough for final acceptance.”
The letter now hangs in the Kurt Vonnegut Memorial Library in Indianapolis.
Author Gertrude Stein was probably fuming when she got this letter from publisher Arthur C. Fifield mocking her manuscript of ‘Three Lives.’
Alice Munro received this 1968 rejection letter from Knopf editor Judith Jones for her book ‘Dance of the Happy Shades.’
Jones writes there is “nothing particularly new and exciting” about Munro’s short stories, calls her work”easily overlooked” and “forgotten,” and comments that Munro is “not that young.”
Today, Munro is the first Canadian and 13th woman to win the Nobel Prize in literature.
Aerospace engineer Clayton Anderson was rejected by NASA 15 times before finally going to space.
According to the book “Other People’s Rejection Letters,” Anderson didn’t feel depressed after receiving rejection letters from NASA. He said he actually felt “hope” whenever he received one: “Most applicants receive postcards; a letter sent on stationary meant something.”
After getting selected to train as a mission specialist by NASA in 1998, he spent finally shot into space in 2007 to spend five months aboard the International Space Station.