Rejection affects the human brain in same way as physical pain notes Self Publishing Review [found via Literary Rejections on Display blog - where else?] citing a study by a UCLA-led team of psychologists :
Rejection, a writer’s fate. Whether impecunious and unpublished or Pulitzer-prize winning and flush, the encounter is inescapable. Unless the writer is a “fulltime” masochist (“part-time masochists” are hereby exempted) the meeting is rarely stumbled upon or bumped into. Rather it’s a consequence traceable to the writer’s own exploits. It comes after months of research, followed by years of writing and rewriting. It comes when the pandemic self-doubt that is manifestly rampant in the writer’s head during the writing process, suddenly peters out, shape-shifts, and re-emerges in the form of unrepressed self-esteem. This cryptic and schizophrenic phenomenon occurs in syncopated climax with the writing of the two most mesmeric words in the writer’s lexicon: The End.And there are suggestions for accelerating the healing process, which includes the instruction :
And it is in this gluttonous – perchance self-delusional – state that the writer dares to think the work all-out brilliant – surely worthy of representation and publication. So convinced, the intrepid writer takes that fateful flying leap into the duchy of literary agents and publishers – the very locus of the infamous Mr. Rebuffer, and his Gongoresque rejectionists-in-training. The writer includes the compulsory SASE with each manuscript, though certain none will be returned. Then the writer waits. Assuming that the odds of enlisting an agent and getting published are working against the writer, there are two scenarios afoot: Immediate rejection or delayed rejection. Either way, it hurts – literally.
Luxuriate in self-pity. (Sad music is an expeditious and freely accessible portico into this seemingly bottomless abyss. Suggestions: ‘Hurt’ by Johnny Cash or Nine Inch Nails. ‘Concrete Angel’ by Martina McBride. ‘Hallelujah’ by Jeff Buckley. ‘Back to Black’ by Amy Winehouse. ‘The Promise’ by Tracy Chapman. ‘Nothing Compares 2 U’ by Sinead O’Connor. ‘In the Real World’ by Roy Orbison. ‘Gloomy Sunday’ by Billie Holiday. ‘Drugs Don’t Work’ by The Verve. ‘Lonely Day’ by Systems of a Down. ‘Creep’ by Radiohead.)The post concludes :
In the end, though physical and emotional pain may technically register through identical mechanism, “rejection” may, in fact, serve the heroic writer well . . . by strengthening both heart . . . and mind.(Pic from Literary Rejections blog)