The Conversation: The Lesson of Rejection

ABC's John Berman and editor Bill Shapiro discuss the upside to rejection.

May 17, 2010— -- Job numbers seem to indicate that Americans still receive a fair share of job rejection letters, perhaps more than at any other time.

Author Bill Shapiro thought one way people could get some perspective on their so-called "failures" would be to gather everyone's rejection letters into a book titled "Other People's Rejection Letters".

Although Shapiro laces the book with dark humor, he told ABC News his goal was not to offer Schadenfreude, allowing others to revel in the misfortune of others, but to offer hope by showing that everyone gets rejected at some point.

From the would-be novelist who received 64 rejection letters from various publishing houses to the pilot who was rejected by NASA 15 times, Shapiro said he felt inspired to see so many others attempting to follow their loves, work or creative pursuits, just like he was.

In today's Conversation, ABC News' John Berman and Shapiro look at the student who applied and was rejected from Princeton's nonexistent law school, an angry 8-year-old and a persistent astronaut, each of who can teach us a lesson about rejection.