Thursday, August 25, 2011

Rejection -- ouch!

Unfortunately rejection is a part of the traditional publishing process. You write your book, polish it up, and send it out to agents and editors. And then you eagerly await their ecstatic reply.

Except the glowing offer of representation or the perfect publishing contract doesn't come. Instead you get a rejection letter. Ouch.

It can't be avoided. I don't think anyone's been published right out of the shoots. It takes time and effort to bring your work up to the level it needs to be for representation and publication. The thing to remember is that publishing is subjective, and what one agent or editor passes on another will love.

My first novel, Searching for Spice, was rejected several times. One letter from an agent thanked me for sharing it but went on to say, "I only represent clients with good ideas and good execution of those ideas -- neither of which was apparent in your work." Double ouch. A few months later, I got a contract with Tyndale House Publishers for that book and Out of Her Hands.

My agent, Rachelle Gardner, posted this week about rejection letters she received on behalf of her clients. Take a look. But the bottom line is that those rejected books were eventually sold to a publisher who loved the book.

Here's a link to an article about 30 famous authors whose work was repeatedly rejected.

Be encouraged. Don't give up. Keep learning the craft, and write on!


Keli Gwyn said...

Megan, I'm another who appreciated Rachelle's post about rejected stories that went on to be purchased. My debut novel was rejected by a number of houses before the offers came. As I went through the submission process, I reminded myself that it only takes one publisher to fall in love with the story and offer a contract.

And hugs on the rejection letter you mentioned in your post. Talk about painful.

Katy McKenna said...

And I'm one of those writers whose novel got rejected a sufficient number of times to warrant sidelining it altogether. As many times as I try to tell myself it's subjective and not personal, I've never yet believed those words. But even if it is personal, it's a business that involves, as one of its constant components, rejection. So, gearing up to face it again! Thanks, Megan.

Katy McKenna said...

Meant to write, "even if it isn't personal...."

Megan DiMaria said...

Thanks, Keli. Fortunately I'm a determined gal, and my hubby is behind me, encouraging me, 100%.

Katy, I read it correctly the first time, then had to go back and see what the error was. LOL. Keep writing and submitting, don't give up! You write so beautifully that at times even your FB updates take my breath away (and make me a tad jealous).

Debbie Maxwell Allen said...

I loved Rachelle's post when I read it yesterday. So good to know that publication is littered with rejection! Might as well get used to it. :)


Megan DiMaria said...

You have to get used to it, Debbie. Either that or find something else to do. ;)

Catherine West said...

Hey Megan! I have just awarded you The Liebster Award! Stop by my blog for the details!