Tuesday, August 11, 2009

What Would Jesus Do? (Not Reject You Like This)

Since we've been taking a stroll down memory lane, remember Eyeshot? This dude keeps a running tally of rejections that's totally worth checking out on a regular basis. Amazing. Here are my two faves (the others are pretty asinine, which I mean in the best possible sense):

1) Sorry for the spareness of the reply, but plagiarists get less than special consideration.

2) It's all intuition. And the "aura" of this one is like sort of a freckly yellow, which reminds me of bananas, which doesn't make me want to post it. That's a really terrible critique, I realize.


Anonymous said...

you realize he could have made all those rejections up on the day he posted them, and never actually sent them to anyone. didn't his journal start with him writing all the stories under pseudonyms?

if you wanted to, you could make up all the posts and set links that go to error pages.

maybe nothing on the internet is real, it's just a spare, freckly banana aura.

Anonymous said...

Freckly banana aura is some kind of penis joke, I'm sure. It makes sense with journal called "Eyeshot." Eeewww, I just grossed myself out.

Anonymous said...

Dear Writer Rejected, I wish I had your email so I could write you directly instead of commenting...because commenting on a blog has a 'public performance' scent to it that I don't in general like (and so I'm going to be an 'anonymouse.')

I tried something and it worked and maybe you might want to try it. You're a really good writer.

1. I stopped telling anyone I was writing. I did tell my husband, but that was it, and he was supportive but frequently said, 'Don't quit your day job', meaning it.

2. I wrote. A lot. Without telling anyone. for months. For over a year, to be exact.

3. First I finished a crap novel that is crap mixed in with some good bits, but also about (in content) the most painful experience of my life, and so part of the reason it remained crap is that it hurt me too much to sit and revise it and I didn't exactly have fun writing it. But somehow I needed to do it, who knows why. In the meantime I also more spontaneously allowed myself to write a bunch of stories. Mostly crap too.

4. I kept writing the stories, just for fun. I took two online writing classes that forced me to write every day, mostly either stories or little pieces of stories.

5. I took out something I'd written and actually liked, a lot, a few years ago and expanded it into a novel. But in between I got bored and sent out the first chapter to agents and a bunch responded asking for the full, which I ignored for a while until I finished my full first draft.

6. I wanted to send it as is but my husband stopped me.

7. He forced me to revise and then I did send it, finally, several months after I thought I would.

8. Got 9 offers of representation, went with one, sold novel about 5 months later (after revising more for the agent) to a major house for respectable but not flashy advance. Was out to editors for about a week before we got the first offer.

9. Recently sold foreign rights to the country taht the novel talks about.

10. I think the key in this was not telling anybody anything. I think the way publishing works is people lie and try to look as good as they can. The more insider stories you hear about various writing competitions being rigged, people hiring book doctors to make sure they get a big advance, people toiling and toiling but also making it big just because they looked cute at some party where they met Salman Rushdie, etc. etc, it's all crap, much worse crap than any crap any of us ever wrote.

So: don't tell anybody anything, shut down the blog, just write, and see what happens, for a year?

Just a thought. Again, sorry I don't have your email or would've sent you this as a letter. Not trying to grandstand in any way. Just never realized, before I tried something different, that not telling people could actually go a long way to helping me write.

Take care and best wishes and best of luck also for your novel publication. Also -- any advice comes with a big grain of salt. What do I know?

Writer, Rejected said...

I appreciate your advice, anonymous. I really hear you. But in truth, I took your journey for the previous twelve years, and that didn't work. The blog is the different thing I'm doing. My therapist says I need to believe in self expression and communication. If it doesn't work this year, I will probably shut down this blog and find a shaman to heal me of this writing illness. :-) My email is writerrejected at aol dot com, btw. Feel free to write anytime. Also, congratulations on your success. Nine offers for representation! An offer in one week! Foreign rights sold! Good for you, sister! Can you say what the novel is about? Is it fiction or nonfiction? Topical? Literary? Timely? Trendy? Amazingly written? Are you lucky? Or a genius?

Would love to feature your book in the victory over rejection section. Email me if you're up for it.

Dennis the Vizsla said...

Cool alphabet -- I detected a pattern immediately but it took me a second to realize what it was. I was trying to decode a hidden message in it, a la "The DaVinci Code". (Which I hated BTW.)

Anonymous said...

I'll definitely think about it, although I don't know if I fit the profile because I really love my day job (I'm a doctor) and also because I was too chicken to even send stuff out, so I avoided rejection handily...but there was the rejection of the first (crap) novel I wrote, so I do know some of the pain. :)

Why think of writing as an illness? I mean -- you're good at it, you will be able to publish, you can always start an online magazine or work for a literary agency if you want to create more ways of 'breaking in' to the whole (crummy) scene...hasn't writing brought you pleasure in life, and isn't that worth something?

Writer, Rejected said...

It has brought me more pain than pleasure, I fear. But maybe that's because my subject matter is painful...not sure. My day job, which is writing, too, is more pleasurable in some ways, but not very meaningful. It's complicated. I hope you'll let LROD feature your book and sell some copies.

Next said...

Um, okay, there is something wrong with the logic here.

A)My book got published.

B) I kept my writing it a secret.

C) Thus, keeping it a secret is the way to get published.

You're a doctor? This is nuts. Your book was published independently of your keeping it a secret.

Eyeshot al Sheriff said...

All rejections on Eyeshot are real (ie, not concocted) e-mails sent to submittors. The final batch is coming soon (I've stopped reading submissions for the forseeable future [ie, forever], for there is more to life than rejection, sadly).