I got my first rejection from a literary agent yesterday. I sent the query Monday which means I was rejected in under 72 hours. That surprised me because I’m always reading how swamped agents are, slogging through a never ending mountain of queries that keeps them weeks, many times months, behind.
The form rejection assured me the query was read, but read by whom? The same automaton that wrote my personalized form rejection? This has the “Viagra Delete” written all over it. Personally, when I sift through my inbox, I get rid of the nonsense first — ads for Viagra, penis enlargement, pleas to send $1000 to Somalia so that I, in return, may inherit millions — and then I’m left with a nice, clean list of emails I’m actually interested in — midnight rendezvous’ with people I’ve never met, laser skin care, and coupons for places I’ll never go.
It’s my own fault. I’m nothing if not adaptable. I searched my soul and reviewed my query methods. Here’s what I learned:
- It’s not a lottery. Spamming their inbox with 3,000 copies of the same query does not increase my chances of winning.
- Change the subject line. “READ THIS F%$#ING QUERY” didn’t work.
- “Sup Bitch” isn’t a proper way to address an agent.
- I should spend more time talking about my book and less time talking about my hair as it pertains to my picture on the book jacket.
All that aside, how do I feel about being rejected? Meh. Business as usual. Rejection is something of a specialty of mine. I once asked a girl to prom and not only did she say “no,” she did the splits and power punched me in the crotch. I’ve been escorted out of McDonald’s because “they don’t serve my kind.” One time, one of those mummified greeters at Wal-Mart told me I couldn’t come in because I lacked the proper attire!
Rejection from a literary agent? Humph. Child’s play.