1. jim79

    jim79 Member

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    Many rejections-looking to improve

    Discussion in 'Publishing' started by jim79, Jan 1, 2018.

    Hi there,

    I haven't been about for a while but looking for some advice... I've now written four books of various genres, sent them to agents and got nothing but rejection notes!
    It's so frustrating but I'm now thinking I need to up my game.

    I'm thinking of sending out the first few pages of each book to someone and find out where I went wrong and improve. Who would be the best people to sent it to? ( i don't have a lot of money)

    Thanks,

    James
     
  2. DueNorth

    DueNorth Senior Member

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    Try the workshop on this forum for starters. And, btw, you’re not alone, a very low percentage of previously unpublished writers get picked up by agents. It’s a tough row to hoe.
     
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  3. Tenderiser

    Tenderiser Not a man Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor Community Volunteer

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    If you're getting straight-up rejections with no requests, it could be your pages or, perhaps more likely, your query. I would post both here and/or on other writing sites and see what people's first impressions are.

    A good query should result in about a 10% request rate (partials or fulls).
     
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  4. CoyoteKing

    CoyoteKing Good Boi Contributor

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    What Tenderiser said.

    If you aren’t getting any partial/full requests, it’s your query.

    If you’re getting requests but then they reject the full manuscript, it’s your manuscript.
     
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  5. jim79

    jim79 Member

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    Hi guys,

    I don't know if it's different in the states but for the UK they ask for a 1 page synopsis, a cover letter and the 1st three chapters. I've read through all of them 3-4 times, checked spelling, had other people look at them and it all seems fine. I love writing but don't want to keep knocking my head into a wall.
     
  6. Tenderiser

    Tenderiser Not a man Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor Community Volunteer

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    Query = cover letter.

    Spelling is important but it's about so much more than that. Good queries are really, really difficult to write for most authors, and most drafts are terrible. Have you had agented/published writers read yours?
     
  7. jim79

    jim79 Member

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    I haven't, but don't know any...would it be worth sending my work to an editor?
     
  8. deadrats

    deadrats Contributor Contributor

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    Rejection is frustrating, for sure. But how much rejection are we talking about here? If you've gotten 100 rejections, 25 on each novel, I still don't think that's a ton. If you've gotten 400 rejections, 100 of each novel, maybe take a look at things. Or write a new novel and send that one out. A lot of the time success is about perseverance.
     
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  9. FireWater

    FireWater Senior Member

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    The best resources I know of to improve your writing are "The Complete Handbook of Novel Writing" (assorted authors), and the blog Story Fix by Larry Brooks - the latter is 100% free and easily available online. Check those out, and I bet you'll learn a lot of ways to improve your stories and writing and elevate up toward a publishable level.

    Also, think of it this way. The fact that you've written 4 completed novels and are now querying them means you're ahead of like 99% of writers. Most people just dribble around about how they "want to be a writer," but have like 15 pages of a crappy beginning sitting in a drawer somewhere. Finishing your first novel is big, let alone 4. I finished my first novel in the fall and am working on my second and that in itself feels like a huge deal, so when I'm querying 4 novels I'll be ecstatic. The rejections are part of the journey.
     
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  10. Tenderiser

    Tenderiser Not a man Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor Community Volunteer

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    No, I don't think you need to pay for it. Do you know any agented/published writers who you could ask? If not, there are lots of websites where you can get query critique, including here. Feedback is always a mixed bag - sometimes it's the blind leading the blind - but the more you get, the easier it is to see any consensus in the issues.
     

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