It is easy to get discouraged in any creative endeavor. I've known writers (novelists, screenwriters, short-story writers, etc.) whom wrote one piece, then when it didn't sell right away, they wanted to give up. Writing is not something you do because you want to, you do it because you have to. It's your passion, in your soul, part of your very being. Often times, a first - or second or third - work is a calling card. A work that helps you land an agent, or a manager or attracts a publisher, maybe one who doesn't feel that that work is right for them, but likes your style, your voice, and agrees to work with you. Those first creative works are also a learning process for most people, a way to develop their own voice and style. Writing university, if you will.
When you do have something you believe in, you'll feel the fire. You'll want to scream it to the world. If no one pays attention, holler louder. If still no one pays heed, scream even louder. I had submitted my bew novel, "The Only Living Man With a Hole in His Head" to nearly 100 literary agents. Not one - NOT A SINGLE ONE - even requested the manuscript. Only one requested twenty pages, and then four weeks later said it wasn't for her. No other notes or comments at all. One of the most important true tales in American history and science and not one agent would even consider it. Yes, at some point you think to yourself, "ok, maybe I should stick to the teen vampire romance deal". That would get 'em all requesting the manuscript. But, no, I believe it what I wrote. I believe that there is an audience out there for it.
And, eventually, I did hook up with a great publisher (SB Addison) - one who sees the value in the work and is smart enough to know that sometimes a novel might need time to build an audience, sometimes not. That a novel that takes place in a different time period and doesn't involves vampires can find an audience.
I remembered that The Help was originally turned down by numerous publishers. That Sylvester Stallone wrote thirty-one scripts previously and had $100 to his name when he wrote Rocky (then studios insisted he not play the title character). That even the Beatles were turned down by Decca Records because "guitar bands were on their way out." Shows you what "experts" know. What a great era we live in too. With blogs, digital publishing, ebooks, Twitter, self-publishing is a better option than ever.
Write. Write. Write. Or paint, paint. paint. Or sculpt, sculpt, sculpt. Whatever your dream, passion, your-being tells you to do - do it. Don't let the naysayers tell you otherwise. Peace out.