Writers are always told that to avoid rejection, they need to proofread, proofread, proofread. Follow the submission guidelines, be familiar with the publication, and things will go well. But that's not always the case. Sometimes writing that is laboured over is rejected. Sometimes even a submission that a writer has rewritten, edited and polished until it sparkles gets rejected—but that doesn't mean that the writer is a bad writer.
So what is going on behind the scenes that an automated rejection email can't tell you? Why does good writing get rejected, and why should writers keep trying when it can be so hard to get traction?