Tuesday, October 30, 2007


Okay...first manuscript, first submission...first rejection. At least I got a detailed letter. Yes, I had the dream of being one of those incredible writers who could brag about getting published on the first try. Why? Don't know. Nothing has ever come easy to me so I'm not sure what made me think getting published would be any different. But I'm brilliant...ha! Whatever. Hubby even got a giggle on that one.

I got my return ms package back yesterday and knew it had been rejected. After reading the letter I went to the bathroom for privacy...hey ~ it has a lock on the door. In a house full of guys...it's my retreat. Anyhoo...I was disappointed and needed to think about what was next.

Well...my first reaction was to share. I talked with everyone close to me...including my crit partners. My hubby said with a sweet smile..."But what the editor said is a good thing." Which got me thinking. The letter was very detailed and she suggested several things. My first thoughts were to move on to another story and give this one a break. I needed space. But after reading the letter again I started thinking about changes. I am trying to be positive...she wouldn't suggest details if it totally sucked and had no hope...right?

Basically ~ my sub-plot was too strong and she said that both stories fit with the line...but separately. Then she suggested several ways to start the story. It will take a little time to rewrite the sub-plot out...but I really want to believe she'll reconsider if I make the changes she suggested. I read online at the eHQ chat boards where the pubbed authors collaborate with their editors and make suggested changes all the time.

The suggestions were very detailed and constructive. They didn't take away from the story, just tond it down and will make it seem or try to change the structure or outline in any way. It didn't suggest that I change the tone...or my voice. She said I should start in a different place. Which was something several of my crit partners had said...okay. I get the hint.

Last night I thought out several different scenes and even got a good one down in a file. The story will focus more on the family relationship and problems and leave out the dramatic police investigation. Which will make it easier to rewrite...right? Not. But at least there is still hope for this one.


Jennifer Shirk said...

Do it, Chelle! Edits always seem like such a daunting task, but once you dive in you'll get your groove. :)

Do you think editors have all the time in world to give detailed critiques? NO. They do it if they see potential in a story and/or writer.

Think about what she suggested for a little bit. Then look at your story again from her perspective and see what you can do with it.

Chicki said...

This sounds silly, but you should be honored this editor spent her precious time responding to you. My first rejection was a pre-printed postcard! :)

Take a little breather, follow her suggestions and re-submit.

Patricia W. said...


I posted on the eHq board but I'll say it again. Congratulations!! And after you've had a reasonable period for self-comforting, haul that thing out, make the revisions, and follow up with that editor! Sounds to me like you're on your way!

And I'm right behind you...

Anonymous said...

(((Chelle))) I've been neglecting the boards so this is the first I've heard of it. Was this your Super?

I'm so sorry... but like everybody has said, editors don't give detailed advice for nothing. If they don't see something in it that they like, they have no problem with just saying "thanks, but no thanks". You got editor feedback and suggestion and it's a very good thing to have. Doesn't help the pain of this not being the time the dream comes true - but it DOES mean you're that much closer and are very much on the right track.

Hang in there!

Chelle Sandell said...

Jennifer ~ It'll almost seem like a new story...just same characters. LOL! Piece of cake. Ha! I think I'll do it as my NaNo!!

Chicki ~ I've heard about so many form rejection letters but even with the details I wonder if she was being nice. But several of the pubbed authors say the editor is extremely swamped and it was the real deal if she took time to suggest changes! I'm up and down on emotions!!

Patricia ~ Thanks sweetie!! Good luck on your Conflict contest! Got my fingers crossed for you! And yes...girl you'll probably be before me.

Tammy ~ Thanks!! Yes...it was from the Supers pitch contest. I guess no one else has heard anything. I'm just hoping when I resubmit she doesn't get pissed and say she was just being polite! I think I'll send an email to see if I'm on the right track.