Ask Wendy: Your Writing Questions Answered

 By Wendy Burt-Thomas                         
                                                                                     Wendy Burt
Q: I’ve been trying to get a book deal but keep getting ‘near-misses.’ Can you interpret some of these rejections?
 
Rejection #1:
“We only publish authors with platforms.”
Translation: We’re a small publishing house with no budget to promote you and you didn’t convince us that you’ve got a way to do it yourself.
 
Rejection #2:
“We only work with experts in their field.”
Translation: We don’t feel you’re qualified to tackle this subject.
 
Rejection #3: “The book didn’t quite live up to our expectations.”
Translation: We liked your original idea/sample chapters, but the book didn’t hold my interest. 
Rejection #4: “This isn’t right for us, but have you tried…”
Translation: This is a good piece of writing and even though it’s not a match for us, I’m willing to refer you to someone else.
 
The Writer's Digest Guide to Query LettersWendy Burt-Thomas is a full-time freelance writer, editor and copywriter with more than 1,000 published pieces. Her work has appeared in such varied publications as MSNBC.com, NYTimes.com, Family Circle and American Fitness. She is the author of three books: Oh, Solo Mia! The Hip Chick’s Guide to Fun for One (McGraw-Hill, 2001); Work It, Girl! 101 Tips for the Hip Working Chick (McGraw-Hill, 2003); and The Writer’s Digest Guide to Query Letters (Writer’s Digest, 2008). Visit her at http://www.GuideToQueryLetters.com

 

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