This week on Romance Writers Weekly, Leslie Hachtel asks:
What is the worst rejection you ever got? And what was the best? Or the funniest? And how did these help you in your writing?
If you joined me from the lovely Carrie Elks, welcome! Don’t forget to check out her brand new release, Canada Square!
Ebooks and the internet have changed the publishing game dramatically. And I’m not just talking about the opportunities for self-publishing. Traditional publishing houses and agents have altered how they accept manuscripts, so that now, in most cases, they want an email with a synopsis, cover letter and maybe a few pages of the manuscript to make sure you can use periods and commas with some accuracy.
Because of this, I think the traditional rejection letter has become a thing of the past. Manuscripts don’t have to be copied and printed and mailed by the pound anymore. Emailed submissions make it so easy—and cheap—for writers to submit, that my belief is that the inboxes of agents and editors are simply flooded.
So now what happens is—nothing. Many agent and editor websites say things like “if you haven’t heard from me in three months, then your manuscript is not for me.” So when three months comes and goes and all you hear is the echo of your fingers on the keys as you keep pecking at the next work in progress, you’re supposed to move on. But what it really happens is you don’t let go of the hope. “Maybe they’re a bit behind. I’ll give them another week or so.” And then another week, and another week. So, instead of the swift, sharp cut of a rejection letter, all you get is—nothing.
I have received only one personalized rejection letter. It was from an agent, and she said while my writing was strong it just wasn’t something she could see herself representing. So I held onto the “writing is strong” part, ignored the rest of the email, and kept on writing! After all, it’s what a writer does.
Leslie Hachtel was the one to propose this question, and she’s next on the blog hop, so I’m sure she’s got something interesting for you to read. Head on over by clicking here.
4/12/2016 01:02:21 pm
It's funny, but those personalised rejections are ones to treasure. They mean someone thought you are worth the effort. That's definitely something to hold on to!
4/12/2016 01:13:27 pm
They're kind of like bad reviews - as long as someone read the book and has legitimate comments, I'm good with them. You can always learn something from them!
4/12/2016 01:59:28 pm
Great blog! You know, I think I would want the letter rejection rather than nothingness. I would want to know why or if a publisher had a suggestion to make the manuscript stronger.
4/12/2016 02:03:08 pm
Yes - the waiting can be a killer!!! And all feedback is good, no matter what.
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