Friday, October 24, 2008

Speaking of Editors and Surviving Rejection...

After yesterday's post, I thought it was worthwhile to share the link to this author interview, over on Fumbling with Fiction. Talk about surviving rejection and living to tell about it! Here's an excerpt from the interview:

"Thanks for joining us, Mandy.

Prada and Prejudice is your debut novel, so a big congrats on that. But can you give us a little statistical rundown on how long it took you to get to this point? How many books? How many rejections? How many days, months, or years?

The log-line on my blog says “A published writer is an amateur who didn’t quit,” and sometimes that’s all that got me through the rejections. The first novel my agent sent out on submissions, in October 2006, was THE JETSETTERS SOCIAL CLUB and we racked up about 12 rejections. They were so short and vague; it was obvious JETSETTERS wasn’t doing it. But a few editors asked if I had anything else, and PRADA AND PREJUDICE started to go out on subs in January 2007. Over that summer, I came so heart-breakingly-close to selling that it was devastating when it didn’t happen. That editor even said she loved it and apologized for not being able to buy it.

By the end of the year I had revised it a few times for various editors and racked up 16 rejections. 2008 started up right where 2007 left off—three rejections within the first weeks. However, the third came in the form of a revision request. Even though I was already in my seventh draft, I decided to do it, and I opened up a shiny new (blank!) word document and started over. I never even opened up the old version. I spent a month writing 100 pages plus a new synopsis, and my agent sent it back. And I was rejected in about three sentences. But thanks to the shiny-new version of the book, my agent felt it deserved another round of submissions. (We were up to 22 rejections at that point). So she sent it to six new editors, and two weeks later, we had two offers.

In total, I spent 20 months on submissions, racking up 40 rejections from almost every editor in New York for two different projects, and PRADA AND PREJUDICE went through nine drafts."

So...never take 1 (or even 10 or 20) rejections so seriously that you give up on yourself or your work. This is definitely one of those inspirational stories to tuck away and pull out to read every now and then!

1 comment:

chandlermariecraig said...

That's great! Isn't Mandy amazing? I am incredibly excited for Prada and Prejudice to come out!