So, in preparation for the future (and after receiving my first rejection from an agent query letter) I'm curious to everyone's thoughts on the subject. Do you go for another revision of your novel, or do you pass right to direct publishing? With great horror I'll ask-or do you just move on to writing another book?
Hooray for the Galaxy Quest reference!
My novel Blind God's Bluff, a 12/12 release from Night Shade Books, was rejected by all the big New York fantasy and science fiction publishers before it found a home with a small press. So truly, you can never know. Thus, I think the answer depends more on who you are inside than on any objective publishing wisdom (assuming there is such a thing.) If rejection is hideously traumatizing, then maybe traditional publishing is not for you. If you've been collecting rejection slips for a couple years with no encouraging signs (personal letters, etc.), then again, it might be time to bail. Nobody can give you the ultimate secret inside answer because no one can predict the future. Your next submission might hit the jackpot. Or not.
KW: I agree with the bookbloggers who say one rejection letter is not sufficient reason to throw in the towel or even revise the ms. Nor would I go the indie route so quickly. You don't mention the genre you're writing in, but there are e-book publishers for almost every topic, subject and genre. You might consider submitting to an e-book publisher. E-book contracts are usually for digital print only so you would still own print rights. And if the book moves on the internet market, a print publisher might consider picking it up. And once a book has a track record, an agent might be interested. The other A-one suggestion was for you to begin another book. Publishers prefer authors who produce more than one ms. Good luck and keep us posted.
Jackie Weger, author
One rejection, are you kidding? Keep on writing and submitting. A rejection is only one person’s opinion. There is bound to be someone who can relate to your story. It may be helpful to have a few people read the ms to see if you are missing something, but I’d only edit if two or more people say the same thing.
The tale of Peter Rabbit was turned down so many times, Beatrix Potter initially self-published it.
Kipling was told he didn’t don't know how to use the English language.
Margaret Mitchell’s Gone With the Wind was rejected by 25 publishers.
J. K. Rowling was rejected by a dozen publishers for her Harry Potter book
And the list goes on and on… so don’t keep up!
I submitted to 40 agents and publishers before I found my publisher. The deal I made with myself was that if I got 100 rejections, I'd let myself self-publish (but only with professional editing and cover art). I'd tried just leaving it, but I felt like I needed publishing - even if it was self-publishing - to get some kind of closure (otherwise I'd never stop futzing with it!).
I was also working on another book at the same time in an entirely different genre, in case book 1 didn't work out.
yes..closure..:: a place to put your creations instead of just in a file or a hard copy in a folder......I am self done....but it gave me the opportunity to get my kids books to schools.. now they are looking into getting funds to purchase more.... without my self pub moment......it would not have happened.. but boy:: I sure would love an agent..I write on every genre....
Hello. In response to your question, you have one rejection letter and you're getting skittish? I have two novels published. Before I was published I send out tons of query letters, sample chapter, and full manuscripts to both agents and publishers alike. During this process I have collected a stack of rejection letters measuring five inches in thickness. But I stuck with it and continued plowing ahead until I finally gained that golden acceptance letter from my first publisher, Leucrota. Now both of my books are under a new publisher, Penumbra. But the bottom line that I want to share with you is that you're not a real writer until you've gotten your baptism of fire with rejection letters. In fact, you are not a real writer until you've set your coffee cup down on top of your stack of 12 or more rejection letters while you're writing your next query letter to another editor. So bottom line? The best advice that I can give you and any other new writer out there is DO...NOT...QUIT!!!!...EVER!!!! :-)
Last year, I attended a RWA meeting and someone asked Jane Porter (Flirting with Forty) how long it took her to get published? She said "fifteen years." The elderly lady in front of me turned around shocked. "I haven't got that much time," she said.
I have been in the romance game for about a year now. I have been studying books and getting the hang of what is required in a romance novel. If I can see I'm improving, why quit? One of my stories is bound to get published some day. The trick is to keep writing until I do.
oh.. well keep writing.. keep putting all your stuff out there... get it in a bucket of finished and write and write and write.....