NO: In Which My Heart Is Torn Apart & Stitched Back Together With Brightly Colored Yarn

Writing is awesome. It is. Even the not awesome parts are awesome.
What's not awesome is the word NO. No is a favorite word of both toddlers and agents, although the two are not one in the same. The truth is in the world of literary representation (and really all of the publishing world), NO is a necessary evil. The problem with NO is that it's often just that, a two letter word without explanation. The other problem with NO, is when people say it to me (womp, womp). <----- That was a funny. Did you catch my funny?
About two weeks ago, I received my first rejection on my full manuscript. <---- BAM It was from an agent, I kinda sorta really loved. <---- POW Said agent had also read my first 50 pages, prior to requesting my full manuscript. <----- KABAMPOW

*Sidenote: Sometimes an agent requests just your query letter up front, sometimes they ask that you also send along a sample of your book. This sample can range anywhere from 5-50 pages. When an agent requests your manuscript simply based off your letter, sending your manuscript kind of feels like a crap shoot (a really AWESOME crap shoot). But when an agent requests your manuscript after having read a sample of your manuscript, they have already in some way connected with your work.

Anyways, when I got that rejection I did three things (in this exact order):
1. I said (out loud and to myself): "FUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUCK!"
2. I cried. Yeah, I'm a baby but at least I can admit it.
3. I got really really quiet. I didn't want to talk about. I didn't want to think about it. I thought that maybe if I didn't think about it or talk about it, my rejection (ouch, still hurts) would cease to exist. But unfortunately that wasn't the case.
Despite all that SUCKAGE, there was some good... sort of. Let's call the agent.... AGENTAWESOME, because despite it all I still think they're amazing.
- AGENTAWESOME sent me a personalized rejection letter just eight days after requesting my manuscript, which makes AGENTAWESOME that much more awesome. Example: I was in a forum the other day and someone said that X agent had had their partial manuscript (not their full) for FOUR MONTHS without a peep. If an agent had my manuscript for that long I would become impossible to live with.
- AGENTAWESOME complimented me saying she loved ________, ________, and __________ but ultimately had to pass because of ___________. To receive specific feedback like that from an agent (and one with a good reputation) is invaluable. INVALUABLE people.
ahhhhh Alas, I move onward.
So that's what's been festering inside of me and there! Now I have it off my chest and I'll keep on trucking along. While it would have been amazing for that first agent to be the one, it's okay (or so I keep telling myself :)) because now I've got this battle scar.
As always guys cross your fingers, cross your toes, cross your arms, cross your.... you get the point. LOVE YOU ALL EVERYDAY. Leave a comment! Comments are the jet fuel to my dreams (cheesy for the win)!

ps- Every time I think "poor little ole me and my shit dream" I read this amazing post by Beth Revis and my insides turn to mush and my eyes tear up (just a tad) and my day gets a little bit better.


  1. Cathy Ballard (Hayley&#39;s Mom)December 16, 2011 at 6:36 PM

    Julie, every "NO" you get just means you are that much closer to your "YES"!!!

  2. One of these days your MS is going to land itself in the hands of the agent your meant to work with. This journey you've started isn't over, not by a long shot!

    Give yourself a high-five for posting this, you're a real cool cat!

  3. A "NO" is better than a "YES" from the wrong people. Stick with it because your "YES" is coming. Love YOU everday!!

  4. Every successful person has had to experience rejection. Whether they are actors, writers, or people in sales... rejection is part of life. When you do get the YES... you will now have come full circle and be able to appreciate those who are still getting the rejection letters. I know you will be a success! I just have to be in a room with you for 2 minutes and my world lights up a little brighter! You will do great things... I know it!
    Love ya!
    Daryl :)

  5. You don't know me, but I saw on querytracker that you just got an agent! Congratulations!! I came to your blog and saw this post and it made me smile. I'm still in the rejection stage, but am so hoping to join you in the agent stage soon. Best of luck with your book!

    1. Anonymous! I wish I knew who you were! Best of luck with everything!