Monday, May 14, 2007

On Rejection Letters

I've been not-writing by reading the Rejection Collection.

A bigger bunch of whiners and wannabes there never was. So many people get so many rejections, and the most anyone can say is "they obviously didn't get my magnum opus" or "stupid poopyhead" (that's a quote, not a paraphrase.

People, come on. I see folks bitching about a personalized rejection... which means the agent cared enough to actually give you some feedback. I see others bitching about receiving nothing but form rejections, and never once considering the problem just might be their writing!

My favorite is here:

The agent thought it was so awful that he/she went ahead and included a rejection for any future attempts.

THAT is dedicated agenting. If only more would do that!

I'm very amused.

What amuses me even more is the number of people who follow directions and expect a person response because they did so. "I followed their submission guidelines to perfection and all they could do was send me a short paragraph form rejection letter?"


And the clincher? This tl;dr boatload of drivel bemoaning the state of the industry.

This person spent FOUR YEARS writing ONE novel. One. They have an english degree, and say "At 25, with only 1 book, I feel like it is impossible to be a writer."

Why aren't you writing number 2? If you've gotten standard form rejections with no explanations at all from all 28 agencies you've queried, something isn't working. Get thee to a critique group. Or better still: start something new.

And throughout this entire rant, this person doesn't consider the obvious: the whole thing sucks. If it it was just one or two things, then you'd get personal rejections. The writing is probably great on a technical level; but if it were only technical skill that got you published, it wouldn't be such a tough biz. English degrees are 100% meaningless. They qualify you to teach: no more.

And then, we come to the point: her manuscipt is 853 pages long. Good GOD. No wonder she got so many rejections. The whole damn novel is tl;dr.

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