January 30th, 2018
Rejection is never easy to swallow.
Today I received a rejection letter from a large game publisher politely declining the opportunity to publish one of my games. I have received rejection letters in the past to publish a game, but this time its different.
In the past, I was working full time as an engineering manager for a large computer company, and games were just my hobby. I had designed a great strategy game and I thought I would put some time into polishing it for publication, just to see what would happen. I play-tested, I polished, and I submitted my game to 3 major publishers. All politely rejected my offer. It was certainly disappointing but life goes on and I just continued to focus on what I enjoyed most about my hobby and I moved on to designing the next game.
But then it happened - something that every game designer hobbyist dreams of: the stars aligned, the timing was right, the opportunity was there, my wife was supportive and excited, and the Lord was willing, so I traded in the software engineering hat I'd been wearing for over 28 years for a game designer's hat.
Now I am designing games for a living... so-to-speak.
Today I received my first rejection letter in my new career. And, to tell you the truth, now that the sting and disappointment have worn off, I actually find myself filled with optimism! I know I have 2
good games in play-test and many more up my sleeve. I now have 40 hours a week (or more) to devote to getting my games designed, play-tested, and polished for publishing. I even have the where-with-all to self-publish, if that's what I decide to do.
Today's rejection is simply one step closer to publishing my game. It's one less red-herring I have to deal with so I can focus on what is actually going to lead me to publishing a successful game. Rejection provides clarity, it simplifies the options, and it reinvigorates me to improve and polish my opus magnum.
Time for me to reflect, refine, and then submit my game to another great game publisher. Who knows, rather than another red herring, this next one might actually be a golden goose.