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Author Topic: Another Rejection
Meredith
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Just got another rejection for BLOOD WILL TELL. I'm not even querying it at the moment, while I try to figure out if I've mis-labeled it all this time.

The query was sent back in June and I'd already counted it as a No based solely on time, so no change in the stats based on this.

I'm counting it as a personal rejection, though. She obviously read my blog and referenced something from my About Me page in the letter. So, something.


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Lissa
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{hug*

Lis

[This message has been edited by Lissa (edited November 23, 2010).]


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MartinV
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I'm sorry to hear it, Meredith. At least you are ahead of me. I haven't submitted anything yet.
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walexander
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You'll get it mer-

You're a talented writer. It will shine through.

W.


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Osiris
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I'm glad you are seeing the positive side of it. Thats the kind of attitude that results in eventual success
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Foste
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You are going to make it. You've got the determination and you are a splendid writer.
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Owasm
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You've got more rejections in the pipeline. Just keep at it. You just need one acceptance to make it worth it.
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sojoyful
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Keep your chin up! It will find a home eventually.
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LDWriter2
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quote:

Just got another rejection for BLOOD WILL TELL. I'm not even querying it at the moment, while I try to figure out if I've mis-labeled it all this time.
The query was sent back in June and I'd already counted it as a No based solely on time, so no change in the stats based on this.

I'm counting it as a personal rejection, though. She obviously read my blog and referenced something from my About Me page in the letter. So, something.


I know the feeling except for the last part. I figure all rejections have to do with bad or at best mediocre writing. But in your case did she say anything or are you just assuming the worse about your web site? That last is hard not to do.

Back when I was sending in queries I didn't have a web site to include, not sure if I would include my blog now.

But I wonder how many queries you have received? I know I got back five or so rejections for one book and one for the other. I never got back a response for a second.I forget how many queries I sent out of but they all came back as No-s. And I stopped sending them in. Just as well since I learned most of what I now know about writing after I stopped and both, no matter how hard I looked, are probably riddled with nitpicks.

But I've heard all the horror stories with writers sending out 50 plus queries before they received a positive response. All the experience with story rejections may come in handy when I start to send out queries fro my new novels.

In your case as hard as it is-I know it can be very hard, I think that's one reason I keep forgetting to send out a new batch of stories-you need to keep it up. And of course, as it sounds like you are doing, keep writing and learning as you wait. Who knows it may be your next book that sells first. That has happened too. I know of two pros who had their second book sell and it wasn't until they were established that they went back and got their first book published. That has probably happened to more than two. And there are those whose third or fourth novel sold first than they found a publisher for the first one.

Sending out stories and queries is one thing writers do. As well as write and learn. One long time pro writer who holds writing workshops says that perseverance pays off.


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Meredith
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quote:
I know the feeling except for the last part. I figure all rejections have to do with bad or at best mediocre writing.

This agency had the first ten pages and a synopsis as part of the query package.

Without further information, my guesses as to the reason are:

  • They just don't want a werewolf story at this time.
  • The voice is actually young adult and I was querying it as an adult urban fantasy, so it wasn't what they expected.

So far, two out of three readers asked specifically to identify the voice as YA or adult have called it YA. That would require a (fairly minor) revision to the novel, a new query, and probably a new title (just to set it off from the original).

quote:
But in your case did she say anything or are you just assuming the worse about your web site? That last is hard not to do.

The rejection said, in part:

quote:
Please keep in mind we accept less than 1% of submitted work and the decision-making process is always difficult. Please keep at it and I wish you and your mother the absolute best. I know personally how difficult such times can be. We wish you the best with this and future works.

Based on that, I don't know whether the blog had any influence on their decision or not. I only know they must have read it because it's about the only place they would have seen that I'm caregiver for my mother. That certainly wasn't in the query.

quote:
But I wonder how many queries you have received? I know I got back five or so rejections for one book and one for the other.

BLOOD WILL TELL has 33 rejections so far, two after requests for a partial. Two queries are still out. No more will be sent until I decide the YA issue.

quote:
I know of two pros who had their second book sell and it wasn't until they were established that they went back and got their first book published. That has probably happened to more than two. And there are those whose third or fourth novel sold first than they found a publisher for the first one.

BLOOD WILL TELL is my third novel. I have high hopes for my fifth, MAGE STORM, which I plan to start querying after the first of the year. (Number four still needs some revisions.)

quote:
One long time pro writer who holds writing workshops says that perseverance pays off.

I certainly hope so.

[This message has been edited by Meredith (edited November 24, 2010).]


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LDWriter2
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You're right about the web site. I guess they really do look at least for those writers they are interested in. Editors are human so it's possible she saw something she didn't like enough to prejudice her, on your web site but to try to guess what would be impossible. And the next editor may not even notice or will like that item.

So far you're doing better than any of the queries I sent out, which means you are doing something right.


I have hopes for all my novels. But so far it looks like there will be three finished about the same time I can send out queries for. Of course they will have to be checked for nitpicks with some revising. I hope it's just some.


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MAP
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Keep it up. I've heard the advice to query at least 100 agents, so you are not even half way there yet.

I'm a little confused at the YA voice. I read the beginning of your novel, and it didn't seem YA to me. Not a bad idea to make it YA though since YA seems to be selling.

I Think the fact that she looked at your website means the agent was interested in the ms. Your getting bites; I know you will reel someone in soon.

Good luck.

[This message has been edited by MAP (edited November 25, 2010).]


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Meredith
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quote:
I'm a little confused at the YA voice. I read the beginning of your novel, and it didn't seem YA to me. Not a bad idea to make it YA though since YA seems to be selling.

The jury is still out. Like I said, two out of three people who read the first three chapters with this specific question in mind say the voice is YA. The third disagrees.

Obviously, if I decide that it should be YA, there will be some changes. Other characters would relate slightly differently to a younger Valeriah, etc. And she would also behave differently in certain situations. As written, Valeriah is 25. If it does change to YA, she'll be about 18.

[This message has been edited by Meredith (edited November 25, 2010).]


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philocinemas
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I would consider that they took the time to visit your blog as a big positive. If they didn't think your story had potential, I wouldn't think they would bother.
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Osiris
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I'm reading an essay on writing by OSC, found in "The Complete Guide to Writing Science Fiction," and I'm pretty sure he mentioned that should your MS be accepted for publication, its the publisher that actually decides which genre label it will get.

I'm not sure if this is a universal truth of publishing or not.


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Meredith
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quote:
I'm reading an essay on writing by OSC, found in "The Complete Guide to Writing Science Fiction," and I'm pretty sure he mentioned that should your MS be accepted for publication, its the publisher that actually decides which genre label it will get.

Probably some truth in that. However:

  • You still have to list some genre in the query letter and that will cause certain expectations.
  • Not all agents handle all genres. It's perfectly possible for an agent to handle adult urban fantasy, but not YA.

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KayTi
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When subbing to publishers, the publishing houses that accept YA are different (often located in different buildings entirely) than the ones who accept and pub adult fiction. It's different lines, different imprints, different businesses. So it's definitely to your advantage to know which (adult v YA), and then target that part of the business with your query. You don't have to specify paranormal romance, or whatever, though - because typically the story makes it clear. Mystery/suspense/thriller - similar, you don't have to specify, often the publisher will decide how to spin it based on what holes they have on their list.

But knowing if it's YA will help you send your book to the right people, either agents who rep YA or the "children's division" publication houses. (Even though YA is read by many adults, it still falls into the children's division of most major publishers. Smaller houses might do YA and adult without separating it out by imprint, I don't know. But the big guns all have separate children's divisions and multiple imprints within them.)

Good luck, I think YA is selling well right now and if your MC's got a spunky voice, it might make sense to recast the story with that in mind, just some tweaks on ages (definitely 18 or under.) There's plenty of edgy YA out these days, you hardly have to modify for thematic elements or "taboo" topics because there's really nothing left that's taboo in YA, it just might be a harder sell if there's explicit sexual content, violence, or loads of swearing.

Hope you can get some clarity soon, good luck!


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Meredith
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quote:
Good luck, I think YA is selling well right now and if your MC's got a spunky voice, it might make sense to recast the story with that in mind, just some tweaks on ages (definitely 18 or under.) There's plenty of edgy YA out these days, you hardly have to modify for thematic elements or "taboo" topics because there's really nothing left that's taboo in YA, it just might be a harder sell if there's explicit sexual content, violence, or loads of swearing.

Thanks. Based on the YA I've read there are only a few things I feel I'd need to change. But changing the character's age causes other changes--the way people react to the character, for example. There are a couple of other minor things I would take out or change. Nothing major.

Still waiting on some more readers before I decide. November's kind of a tough month--holidays, NaNo, etc.


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Chris Northern
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Soeey to hear it, I know how it feels. When you are confident, as I was, that the quality of the work is not the issue, this process becomes sould destroying. Personally, I gave up on the idea and self-publish online, ebooks that people buy and read. I may never become a household name, or even well known in the fantasy field, invited to speak at a convention, or any of that. But those so far very few fan letters and that so far very little actual payment for the work are more than enough for me. Io Lava!

[This message has been edited by Chris Northern (edited November 27, 2010).]


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