I am a writer, a Young Adult (YA) novelist to be specific. The fact is, no one other than me knows it. My absence in the literary world is not due to a lack of trying on my part. I’ve reached out to publishers, literary agents and editors who according to their internet profiles are ‘actively seeking young adult manuscripts’. If I receive (emphasis on the ‘If’) a response it falls into one of three categories:
The first category is the ‘Thanks but, no Thanks’. This group is by far the majority of responses received. These emails are typically auto-responses with two separate, but distinct parts. the first; a thank you for the submission, but … ‘this project is not for me’. Without fail, this statement is followed by a version of ‘however, I’m sure someone else will love it.’ The the second statement is intended to soften the blow of the outright rejection found in the previous sentence. Clearly, this is included to make the sender (rejector) feel better and not the receiver, since, in most cases, as soon as someone see the “no” they stop reading. Even though the ‘Thanks but, no Thanks’ responses are polite and include a few encouraging words they are basically saying – Your book sucks, never contact me again.
The second type of response is the ‘Fake-out’. This response is less frequent, but far more frustrating. These are often also auto-Responses (the first red flag goes up). this response starts with a statement of: We love your book! For a brief second, in the excited haze of seeing the word ‘yes’ you think ‘it’s finally going to happen’… they go on to say ‘We can start publishing this next week. (Another red flag goes up). The elation you feel is short-lived. It doesn’t take long to realize nobody at their ‘agency’ has actually read the manuscript. All I need to do is send them a ton of money and commit to selling vast number of my own book and they be happy to accept me as a client. Crash and burn…
I’m told there is a third category the ‘I’d like to see more’. I’m beginning to think this elusive response is merely a rumor, or a myth like aliens and Big-foot. This is the response we all dream about. ‘Thanks for you submission… I’d like to see more… please send me your entire book.’