First a Rejection: The Triumph of Resubmission

Lauren Vater, MD, MPH shares an uplifting first-hand experience of pushing past rejection and into personal triumph.

Almost 3 years ago, I submitted my first essay to a journal, and it got rejected.

It took some time to submit again, but I forced myself to submit.

I was rejected again.

I thought about tossing it aside, that it just wasn’t good enough. But I kept submitting.


Months later, a female editor (Dr. Rita Charon) thought it was “extraordinary.”

The same essay.

And then it got published in JGIM.


I thought about tossing it aside, that it just wasn’t good enough. But I kept submitting.


Months after this, I got an email from a Pulitzer-Prize winning author:

“Dear Dr. Vater, I am working on a book about writing: not writing for writers, but for civilians, and what it can do for our sense of self.

Last week I spoke by phone with Rita Charon… She forwarded me your piece.

I wonder if we might speak by phone…

Thanks in advance.”

FYI, I wept. Just saying.” – Anna Quindlen.

The essay that almost didn’t get published (because I was nearly too afraid to re-submit) is now the reason Anna Quindlen has included our interview in her book WRITE FOR YOUR LIFE (which came out in April of 2022).


Months after this, I got an email from a Pulitzer-Prize winning author. The essay that almost didn't get published is now the reason I've been interviewed for a book by a Pulitzer-prize winner. Click To Tweet


Don’t let rejection stop you.

Keep going.

Keep submitting.

Keep trying.

Our work is not for everyone. We are not for everyone.

Keep putting your work out there. The world needs your voice.


(And please check out this phenomenal book, How To Write For Life, about how we all can write, and why we should.)


Tweet this:

Earn CME credit:

This learning experience is powered by CMEfy - a platform that brings relevant CMEs to busy clinicians, at the right place and right time. Using short learning nudges, clinicians can reflect and unlock AMA PRA Category 1 Credit.

Subscribe To Our Newsletter

Get updates and learn from the best

I Have to Wait How Long?!?!

I Have to Wait How Long?!?!

David Epstein, MD, MS, FAAP discusses why it takes time to be seen for an acute illness and what makes up a medical visit.

What if Twitter Went Kaput?

Dana Corriel, MD explains how professionals should ideally regard EVERY social media platform, and use it to their benefit.

Susan J. Baumgaertel, MD FACP

Navigating Your Health (with Dr. Susan Baumgaertel)

Dr. Baumgaertel draws upon her 30 years of experience as a physician in primary care internal medicine, and uses her personal story-telling style to communicate with you as if you are sitting right across from her. Pull up a chair and enjoy.

My DPC Story

Their DPC Stories

Physicians are increasingly looking to different practice models, as burnout rates continue to climb. This series explores the DPC model.

Harvey Castro MD MBA

Harvey Castro MD MBA

Serial Entrepreneur, Published Author, Successful Medical Start up companies. On NBC Telemundo Univision

Support A Platform that Celebrates Real Doctors

For just $10 a month, you can help keep this openly accessible site available to all & help us sposnor in more doctors.

I acknowledge that this site is not to be used for medical advice.

Play Video
Our Founder Answers Your BURNING Question


“Why should I become a member of SoMeDocs if I already have my own space online?”