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Rejection - not literary enough

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Hi everyone.

I recently had an editor request a rewrite. Got the rejection today. He liked the MS, but he rejected it because, in a nutshell, my MS is not literary enough. Worth noting that my MS is MG science fiction. Now, I am not a literary writer. Ain't gonna happen. I want to talk to my agent about submitting to publishers more open to commercial works...(as in, paperbacks, not hard covers) but I realize that a lot of commercial stuff out there in MG-land are series put together by book packagers.

I wonder if I can really find a home for this thing... :sigh
#1 - December 05, 2011, 10:11 PM

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awwwwwww, Wonky.  I'm sorry.
plenty of other manuscripts get rejected for being TOO literary, so I'm thinking there's a home out there (& in this very galaxy) for your MG science fiction story!
#2 - December 05, 2011, 10:41 PM
THE CABINET OF EARTHS -- HarperCollins, 2012

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Don't overanalyze it (or despair). All it means is "no."

I've had "too commercial" and "not commercial enough" on the same ms. I think both those and "not literary enough" are things they say when they want to feel like they're giving some feedback but all they're really saying is "no."

Send it somewhere else...
#3 - December 05, 2011, 10:58 PM
The Farwalker Trilogy
The Humming of Numbers
Reality Leak

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Thanks. Thing is, my agent is mostly focusing on hardcover imprints (if that's the right word.) I think my book is more along the lines of Captain Underpants and if possible I'd like to work with my agent on targeting the submission...I have very little time/resources to devote to submitting (one reason I am using an agent.)

I am not even in the US right now (Japan!) so unfortunately I can't go to the local bookstore to browse for ideas...
#4 - December 05, 2011, 11:29 PM

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It's amazing how many different reasons editors have for turning down a book.  Mine was turned down by one editor because she didn't think it was best seller material.  Didn't even think about that when writing the book, was just thinking about writing a good book (which she thought it was).

God Bless,
Susan :)
#5 - December 05, 2011, 11:43 PM
Susan York Meyers, Children's and YA Author


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