Monday, March 21, 2005

Rejections and writing quality

At the end of a post about not whining about your publisher's support or lack thereof (link above), JaynieR adds the following:

"Honestly, I'd love to know how many authors at these pissy little publishers were rejected by the top half a dozen first...If you aren't good enough for a decent publisher, then you probably aren't good enough."

I agree with the general point of her post, which is that writers shouldn't settle for a publisher that won't do a good job. It's not clear from her blog entry which "pissy little publishers" she's referring to. But regardless, I think this comment reflects a misapprehension a lot of people have-- the idea that if you're a good enough writer, you'll be snapped up by the first New York editor you approach. Good writing doesn't guarantee you'll sell to a major publisher (or even one of the larger e-publishers) the first time you try, or even the twentieth time you try, and the fact that an author decides to go with a smaller house doesn't necessarily mean her writing is inferior. You can be a very good writer and still not sell for various reasons, none of which may have to do with the quality of your writing. In fact, I'd warrant that most authors writing for major pubs have received more than a half dozen rejections before they got accepted.

I received well over half a dozen rejections (nine, to be precise) for my first romance before selling it... to Bantam.


  1. I'd actually like to know which publishers she's referring to also. That's a rather sweeping generalization.

  2. OMG - I'm on your blog. How cool is that lol.

    Umm...Only talking ebook pubs. I freely admit to knowing nothing about NY except that it's darn near impossible to get published no matter how great you are.

    So yeah - top half a dozen ebook publishers lol.

    As for the "pissy little ones" - I can't name them dude - I'm not that stupid *g*, but I'm talking smaller or lessor quality epubs. I've read a huge amount of ebooks in my reviewing career and the quality of a publisher is obvious when they continuously put out bad books.

    Wow, I'm on a blog - *still grinning*

  3. Thanks for the clarification, Jaynie!

    BTW, I like your blog:-).