The wait is over and I have learnt that I didn't make it into the writing workshop I applied for. It's impossible not to be disappointed by this, because the one thing most aspiring novelists yearn for is recognition that someone will want to read our manuscripts. My getting into this workshop would have been a sign that someone (other than people who know me) sees enough in my manuscript to want to read on.
Of course, not getting into the workshop doesn't mean that the manuscript is completely worthless. It just means that it didn't appeal to the one person who was assessing it. But even that has the amazing power to seed major doubt. It's the stone in the shoe, the pea at the bottom of the princess's 16-mattress-high bed. We all want to write the novel that will appeal to everyone, no matter who they are!
Ah well, I am trying to be philosophical. While acceptance would have been an amazing endorsement of my direction and calling, rejection is not -- or should not be -- the antithesis.
And, in fact, a great part of me is relieved, for although I would have welcomed the affirmation that acceptance would have brought, in truth the manuscript is not ready. I still have a helluva lot of rewriting to do on the current draft, and I was starting to panic. Now I can calm down, take the time to clean the house, see friends and go shopping, and write without that oppressive deadline. And there's always next year . . .