Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Rejection with a Smile

I finally got up the nerve to send out a couple of query letters for my novel, The Ink of Time. I worked and reworked the letter many times over. The goal of a query letter is to sell an agent on your project – and do it in the realm of just two or three well worded paragraphs.

I did a lot of research on how to write my letter, and I got lots of contradictory information. So I decided to hybrid the information I liked into a letter that sounded like me. Then I researched agents. It’s important that you send your letter to someone who’s actually interested in your genre. From what I’ve read, many a writer’s work is rejected simply because he or she didn’t do their homework and sent their letters to the wrong people/agencies.

The first agent I sent my query letter to has not responded. And wouldn’t you know, just after I hit send on the email I noticed that I’d left out the word ‘a’ in a sentence. How did I miss that after so many rewrites? And then notice it the minute- no the second- it was too late? I was so upset. After all, if a writer can’t create a cohesive letter, how could she create a cohesive book?  My husband Tim advised me to ‘let it go’ and move on. So after a couple more pouts, I did.

The second agent I queried required the first five pages of the story to be sent along too. I went over those five pages AGAIN, probably for the fiftieth time (I’m not exaggerating here) before I hit the send button. And guess what? I GOT A RESPONSE BACK!!!!!
A gift from above. Thank you, Lord.

The response was a rejection- a very kind one. She didn’t tell me to take a writing class, like JK Rowling received in a letter rejecting Harry Potter. She didn’t tell me to hang up my pen and walk away.  She was very kind. I didn’t expect that. 

You may be wondering why I’m excited about getting a rejection letter—I’m excited because she TOOK THE TIME TO READ what I’d sent. 
Not only that, she TOOK THE TIME TO RESPOND BACK.  That’s huge. HUGE! (Like a really big deal!)  To me it means my work is good. That it’s worthy of a person’s time; a person whose job is to find books to represent for publication.
"Logically speaking, luck is not an arbitrary
event. Rather it is the combination of hard work
and perseverance, but I'll give you a
thumbs up anyway, silly human."

So I’m energized to say the least.  I’m working on my second book project while researching agents to send my first book project to. I’m hopeful. I’m having fun.

Wish me luck!

Until next time,

Be Good to Yourself,


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