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gettingby
04-23-2008, 09:49 PM
I got my first rejection on my book proposal. It sucks. I had several agents request the proposal, and this is the first time I am hearing back. I was hoping there would be some feedback if I did get rejections, but this was just a quick "not right for me." The thing is why would an agent request the proposal if it wasn't right for them? This agent had sounded enthusiastic and responded quickly to my query. Is it wrong that I expected a little more? Ok maybe this is just a vent. I am not happy today.

CaroGirl
04-23-2008, 09:51 PM
What do you mean by "requested the proposal"? How did they request it? Do you mean you sent them a query letter and they asked for a partial or full and then rejected that? If so, that happens all the time.

clara bow
04-23-2008, 10:30 PM
Sorry about the lack of feedback. It doesn't mean anything is wrong with your proposal. It could possibly mean the agent thought the material was going in a different direction and subsequently the enthusiasm waned.

Just remember that statistics dictate that agents can't recognize a quality project if they trip over it...er, dictate that if you send out a largish enough sample of queries, many will come back as form rejections simply due to the subjectivity factor followed by the (lack of) time factor on the part of the agents.

Just query widely.

IHeartWriting
04-23-2008, 10:31 PM
"Not right for me" is a pretty standard response. So is a lack of feedback.

Try not to take it personally!

Moon Daughter
04-24-2008, 12:46 AM
I got my first rejection on my book proposal. It sucks. I had several agents request the proposal, and this is the first time I am hearing back. I was hoping there would be some feedback if I did get rejections, but this was just a quick "not right for me." The thing is why would an agent request the proposal if it wasn't right for them? This agent had sounded enthusiastic and responded quickly to my query. Is it wrong that I expected a little more? Ok maybe this is just a vent. I am not happy today.

An agent may think a query sounds interesting, but when they read a partial, they may realize it's just not perfect for them. Most agents won't take on a project unless they are absolutely enthusiastic about it. A writer's style may not reflect well with an agent and that could be a reason to pass, even though they requested it. Think of it this way...a query is like looking at a cupcake through the bakery's window. A partial is like licking the frosting. They get more of a taste for the story and the writer with a partial and an even better understanding with a full. But just because the cupcake looks fantastic, doesn't mean it's going to taste as good as it looks.

Er, sorry for the long, poor analogy. Nonetheless, very sorry to hear of your rejection. But don't worry, it only takes one "yes".

kullervo
04-24-2008, 01:23 AM
Just for a quick cheer-up, my mother and I were at the Maui Writers Conference several years ago, at a time when she was shopping a non-fiction book. Two agents were interested, but one (very well-known, even writes books about agenting and writing proposals) thought her book should be more humorous. A couple of days later he reconsidered and wanted to talk further about the project, but she had already signed with the other agent. So they don't always understand a project on brief acquaintance. It doesn't necessarily reflect on the proposal.

My mother's "needs more humor" book?

http://www.amazon.com/Retirement-Nightmare-Involuntary-Conservatorships-Guardianships/dp/1573927961/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1208985631&sr=8-1

gettingby
04-25-2008, 11:11 AM
kullervo - thanks for your sharing your mom's story. I would love for that to happen, but I'm not planning on it. It just really bothers me not to know what the agent was thinking when she rejected it.

windyrdg
04-25-2008, 10:51 PM
Most agents try to be oblique so that they a) don't hurt feelings and B) don't create false expectations. They're really not in the business of giving tips and advice. I'm sure getting 50 or so unsolicited queries every day tends to make a person jaded.

Let it roll off your back and plow ahead.