Tuesday, January 27, 2009


The title of this post is I suppose a play on words (is that what I mean? I am so very sleep deprived.)

I got a rejection on ''For Love or Ratings'' the full mss, which Super requested last year. But it wasn't all bad - infact, considering a number of things and that it was my first ever full submission, I think it was rather Super!!!

Thanks but no thanks basically - the story doesn't work for us! Then they listed all the things they are looking for - basically the guidelines on eharl and said that while my proposal contains some of these elements, it lacks others. I knew that!!! And am not at all surprised, semi-relieved in fact cos I think it has enough faults in it that I wouldn't be able to resurrect it at the moment. If ever!

Here's an extract:

''Despite an intriguing premise, the story suffers from inconsistent style and tone. Parts of the story appear to be a somewhat screwball comedy, while others rely heavily on psychological introspection. While the screwball aspect has potential, the execution doesn't work. To be successful, the story would need several things. First, a facetious type of misunderstanding to tart it off - the instant attraction/hot sex we have here denies the story even this opening conflict! (fabulous point but why didn't they pick it up in the partial and let me FIX IT??) Second, the writing needs to take a light and jaunty approach to the story, and avoid the psychological baggage that weighs this version down. Then, related to the second point, the psychological background with Declan's mother and MAddie's miscarriage would need to be taken out and replaced with a series of clashes and misunderstandings between them building up to a conflict climax. So, although the concept of the story has potential, the approach the writing takes needs to be reexaminded.''

And that was basically it!!! 

I totally agree and I was fairly certain they'd reject me. I didn't believe it was a GOOD ENOUGH book to be out there. And I never want a book that is just GOOD ENOUGH published. I want one that SPARKLES as unique!

 I'm putting this one away for good - perhaps one day I'll take elements from it, but overall I think this is a good thing. It was my first real attempt at category and I wasn't actually targetting a particular line, especially not Super.

So, I'm forgetting about Super for a while and focusing on Modern Heat. At least until I hear from the editor on THAT sub and they say it's not for them :)


Jackie said...

That's a pretty good rejection, Rach. I mean, it's a bummer, but I know what you mean about wanting to have the story that eventually sells be the best you can do. I must admit to being relieved when my first Modern Heat partial was rejected - I knew it would be because the story sucked. :-)

By the way, your Modern Heat won't be rejected because they'll love it. So there.

Joanne said...

It's a bummer to get rejection letters but as Jackie said, it's a pretty good rejection letter.

I still think it's fantastic that you were asked to sub a full mss and did it! That's an achievement in itself!

I'm sure HMB are going to love WWMM - it's fabulous :)

B.H. Dark said...

Any rejection that includes personalised feedback is a good one. It sounds like the first part of the letter is a standard rejection (they always say it has some parts but lacks others, I've got several of those letters!), but then the editor saw enough potential in your writing that she wanted to give you detailed, personal feedback. It shows she read your story carefully and with interest. That's excellent!

It's frustrating when you're rejected partly for something that was in the original partial that they seemed to like at the time, but often the editor can't judge what's working or not until she sees the whole story.

The best thing though is that you know you've moved on and improved your writing! Congrats on such a good rejection, especially with your first submission.

Julie Cohen (aka BH Dark)

Caitlyn Nicholas said...

Hugs Rach! But at least it was constructive. You are so close! I can't wait for the day I buy your book from a pile in our local Big W!!

Sami Lee said...

Commiserations and congratulations Rach. That's a great rejection for a first submission, especially as they confirmed things you already knew. Shows you're on the right track now. Good luck with Mod Heat.


Lucy said...

I think that's an amazing response for a first submission to a category romance line. And your MH one is obviously fabulous!

The Dribbler said...

Awww, sorry about the rejection, Rach. We all get them. Some of us piles of the damn things.
I'm quite amazed by the feedback though. It's very comprehensive which says to me that they not only read your manuscript closely, but that they liked quite a lot of what they read.
Good stuff and a big flashing sign that says you're close. Damn close.
Your fabulous Mod Heat will be IT, you just wait.

Christina Phillips said...

Hugs on the pass Rach, but at least the editor gave comprehensive feedback as to what exactly didn't work for her and her line.

And very best of luck with your Mod Heat! I've got all my fingers and toes crossed!

Rachael Johns said...

Thanks so muchly everyone :)

Maisey said...

I know this is old, but I was post surfing...

Thank you so much for sharing your rejection letters, I really appreciate having the chance to read them, it gives a lot of insight into those scary editorial minds...