I got my first fiction rejection yesterday. This was just as expected, and strangely inspiring. While I wish that I had gotten some comments in my rejection, I understand that one can't have everything. The other two stories that I have been working on have absorbed the energy of that hard sell and might even be first-draft-finished this week.
Speaking of making stuff, have you started work on your contest entry? Here are the details. Images of a full inbox are dancing about my head...