A couple weeks ago, I received a coveted REPLY to a query/first 3 chapters submission. It was from Bookfish Books, a small publishing house that requested my submission after seeing my pitch on Twitter.
It was a rejection.
My second rejection of possibly hundreds, but a rejection none the less.
Wait. It gets worse.
There was feedback included in this rejection. Now, technically, this is a great thing. It means they took the time to read my entire submission, the editors discussed it, and together they came up with specific reasons as to why my manuscript is "not ready for publication." So far so good, right? Let's take a look at said feedback.
1. There were "too many reality and plot holes." So much so that the reader was drawn out of the story.
2. The dialogue did not help build the world. As an example, they did not like that my characters spoke so informally to one another. I think I need a second opinion on this one.
3. Too many "kingdoms" and characters introduced at once.
I can definitely fix that. Although there are only two kingdoms. But I think I get what they mean.
4. It reads like Middle Grade (ages 8-11) and not YA (ages 11-14).
In sum. Before receiving this email, I was looking forward to January, in which I would finish the LAST edits on the LAST chapter, wrap up the manuscripts, and send them on their way to the beta readers. In reality, January will see the genesis of a complete rewrite of the book. Starting with the first three chapters.
Thanks to the ever-patient moral support of Editor Adair and Husband Hill, I have not jumped off of the roof. Our house is too short for that to be very affective, anyway. So, new plan: I won't delete a single sentence until I know exactly what I am going to do, down to the last (informal) line of dialogue. I am going to thoroughly solve all problems presented by Bookfish Books, to whom I am very grateful, even though it doesn't sound like it. And I am going to pitch it again in the summer, new and improved!
I'm fine. It's totally fine.
See you at the local coffee shop!