View Full Version : agghhh.

05-18-2006, 05:00 PM
just got rejected by Desire on an agented submission. The editor said my hero was "too alpha". ???

I realize this business is highly subjective, but sometimes I just don't get it. Every Desire title I've read always has a strong alpha-male hero.

sorry. venting. . .

05-18-2006, 05:53 PM
Aww ***hugs*** Sorry to hear that. I didn't think a hero could be too alpha.

05-18-2006, 06:49 PM
I have written 5 novels. All are agented. None have sold. The reasons for rejection are always vague and nonsensical. I have been at this for almost ten years. Don't know what the point is anymore.

Susan Gable
05-18-2006, 08:15 PM
I'm sorry! {{{HUGS}}} I'm a little surprised by the reason for the rejection because I thought Desire was moving towards more alpha guys.

I think Desire is one of the toughest lines to get into. It's a popular and well-paying line, and there are also a number of displaced H/S writers who also might be trying to move into that line.

Hang in there!

Susan G.

05-18-2006, 08:23 PM
yes, their guidelines specifically say they want a very alpha male balanced by an equally strong heroine. But I was rejected solely for following this guideline. It doesn't make sense to me at all. I suppose it's just another way for them to say "your writing isn't good enough for us." Typical.

clara bow
05-18-2006, 09:56 PM

05-18-2006, 10:09 PM
thanks for all the support and hugs. Was just feeling very down in the dumps over his one, esp. since my agent really thought this one would go through. I am just so frustrated with the whole business.

05-19-2006, 01:15 AM
Hang in there! If I can't give up--and I have no agent-- then neither can you! You'll get there, I'm sure of it! :Hug2:

05-19-2006, 01:24 AM
Have your agent ask for more feedback. The editor should email back with a few more thoughts to help you see what about the story was wrong for Desire right now. With the restructure, I know things are changing - but I thought they were going more alpha, not less. So your confusion is justified.

05-19-2006, 06:16 AM
Take another look at your hero. Is he Alpha? Or is he an insensitive, arrogant jerk? Not saying that you would write that. But maybe he's too overbearing, too strong. THere is such a thing as too alpha. Even the most alpha of males needs a soft side. okay, maybe just a soft spot. ;) Is the reason the woman falls in love with him viable? Is there something to love about him? You love him, ofcourse, he's your creation. But if you met this man and he acted the way he does in the book, would you really like him, not knowing his internal thoughts, or would you want to slap him upside the head?

I do agree about the vagueness of it. It would be nice if they could give even just one example. I once got a crit back saying I misused "like" and i should use "as if". only thing is the critter never once pointed out where I misused "like". I could only find it in a few snippets of dialogue where it clearly exhibited the speaking pattern of the heroine. But it really bothered her.

Good luck.

05-20-2006, 08:52 PM
thanks for all the support and hugs. Was just feeling very down in the dumps over his one, esp. since my agent really thought this one would go through. I am just so frustrated with the whole business.
I heard from a friend whose MS was recently accepted that it takes longer to publish the books than it does to write them. You just have to stick to it.

05-21-2006, 09:33 AM
:Hug2: So sorry Sakamonda for your rejection. I know it hurts, especially when you get such a 1 dimensional reason ....

I love AWF. You get great support as a writer ...:)

i.e. Nevada's question about your hero really being an Alpha or a jerk,

I remember a contest I entered once, a comment by one of the judges about my alpha hero was she didn't like him, he was a jerk and selfish...

I think even an alpha hero has got to show redeeming qualities...and be a softie sometimes

Keep on truckin' kiddo...

05-21-2006, 10:01 AM
Sakamonda, I'm sorry to hear about this. We share the same agent and I'm enduring the exact same submission process that you are now undergoing. I got the wierdest neg comment from Ann at Bantam Spectra for "not pushing the genre enough." Other than that I got all As for the other parts. And believe me, I hate it when I near-miss a perfect publisher.

The only problem that I can think of is that maybe your man was too over-the-top. Personally, I'm hoping that the trend changes in the future where the mysterious, badboy, brooding, control-freak, domineering type get his azz thrown out of the script, and is replaced with the strong, aggressive, winner, type guy, tempered with just the right sensibilities and satire. Did you give him a personality quirk, or something to showcase the humanity in him? I only say this because the cliche', indestructible alpha male can be a bit one-dimensional, and certainly predictable.

However, I'm male and no romance writer. So I would wait on any additional comments from future editors and see if you can glean a trend from this. But this is...puzzling because Desire leans toward this type of male character.

Hang in there. We're going to make it.


05-22-2006, 03:22 AM
alpha, shmalpha. this business is all about catching an editor in the right mood. try visualizing. see an editor glancing at your material, doing a double take, smiling ear to ear and sending your project up the ladder. the publishing world is comprised of mostly follow the leader editors MANY of whom who are fearful of taking that independent step in deciding to publish a specific submission. thrust your chin forward and march to the beat of your own drummer. publishing isn't everything, it's the ultimate. you will get there if you perservere. I PROMISE!!!!:tongue