The Best Rejection Letter Ever …

200336717-001The two longest months of my life resulted in the best rejection letter I’ve ever received.

Originally, I had an appointment with an agent at Romance Writers of America Conference in July. However, they were unable to attend and allowed me to pitch via email.

Prior to pitching this agent, there was something I liked from the start. They were cordial and professional, and we’d established a bit of a rapport through email. It could have been when they said, “Sorry I won’t be able to meet you in person, but have fun at the conference.”

I was excited about the prospect of pitching via email, but wasn’t sure how one went about it. However, I did what I thought was normal, I sent my query.

To my utter amazement, the agent requested my full manuscript. Not only was my manuscript requested, but I was able to email it, which I found so much better. I was over-the-moon delirious.

After checking my manuscript for proper formatting for the tenth time, I clicked the send button, and then played the game all writers have experienced–the waiting game. I queried in June and received a response in September, which is very good considering how busy agents are.

As I mentioned, this was the best rejection letter I’ve ever received. It was an email specifically telling me what they liked about my book and why they couldn’t represent me. They explained that, “the chick lit voice” in my book really didn’t work for them.

Honesty, and constructive criticism? It doesn’t get better than that!

I continued to read my rejection letter and instead of the usual display of disappointment, I smiled. The agent ended by saying, “However, I do think it was well written and will find a place in the market I’m just not the right person to represent it. I wish you the very best in your literary career and I have no doubt you will sell.”

That sentence was golden. Not only did it confirm that I was on the right track, but it gave me a boost to forge ahead. Every day I get closer to having my baby on a shelf or two at Barnes and Noble, and on Amazon.

There’s an old adage my mother said often, “What doesn’t kill us, will make us strong.” Sound familiar?

It’s true. This particular rejection didn’t kill me. It made me stronger, as do ALL my rejection letters, especially the overly nasty rejections. (Unfortunately, I’ve had a couple.)

However, THIS rejection letter was unique because the agent spoke to me, the author. I almost felt as though I was told in person, as opposed to email.

I was impressed and would definitely query this agent again–sans the chick lit voice.


4 thoughts on “The Best Rejection Letter Ever …

  1. How I’d love to see the letter, the query, and the ms.! Congratulations. Especially congratulations for being able to rewrite in a differnece “voice.” Maybe I’m too old to do that.
    All best wishes!

  2. nettrobbens says:

    Thanks Joan! I think my story may have been too “chick lit” for this agent’s taste because of the age of my heroine (28) and some of her issues. However, there are others who would consider it a steamy romance or at best, hot women’s fiction. I’m going to continue to write in my style and perhaps one of my stories won’t have too much of a “chick lit” voice, if I submit to this agent again. (i.e. characters are more mature, theme and plot varies.)


  3. drtombibey says:

    Mine wasn’t chick litty enough, but I found my way.

    Dr. B

  4. […] are varying degrees of rejection. Some can actually inspire you, while others can be downright hurtful. Yet no matter how good or bad they are, our egos and […]

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