Jill Monroe, Harlequin author, writes on rejection and what happened when she sent in her very first manuscript to a contest:
In a word: AWFUL. In fact, one of the judges said I should spring for the Tylenol since my writing gave her a headache. That comment really hurt, and I actually didn't write for a while. (I'm sure this judge thinks that's a good thing.)Ouch.
I also had another judge write B/S in the margins of my contest entry, but that's another story.
This is a business filled with rejections, and yes, hurtful comments.