A Full Manuscript Rejection, or a Gold Mine?

I’m sitting here, staring at a rejection letter one of my writing partners received. “Not quite ready for publication at this time.”   Bummer.

Rejection letters stink, but this one comes with an offer to resubmit through alternate channels if she decides to revise. Hmmmm. Sounds positive.

I open up the PDF file of the full manuscript, and find it redlined to heck and back. HOLY COW!   Wait a minute, one thing they said is never use capital letters. Excuse me… quick correction… Holy Cow!   Wow, it even looks better.

So, yes, this is a rejection, but I cannot help but be extremely positive.   It took me three hours to read and take notes on all their comments. Did you get that? THREE HOURS Oops… Three hours!   I can’t help but think, “Wow… if they put that much work into it, they must have thought it was worth something.”

Yes, they are gently suggesting a few pretty major changes, but most of them are minor, and they are really dumb mistakes that I realized my own manuscript is riddled with.  Funny thing is, I didn’t even realize that these things were mistakes.  I looked at my own pages, found three of the same mistakes in a single chapter I was editing, and fixed them with about ten seconds thought.  It was so simple, and it flows so much better now.

So, was this just another rejection? Nope! No Way! This is a stinking gold mine!

I have my writing partner’s permission (keeping it anonymous) to post what I’m learning from this experience here on my blog.  As I really digest everything, one topic at a time, I will send up a blurb about it.  At the end, I think I will post all of the entries up as a permanent page.

This is stuff every writer should know, because it came right from a publisher.  I know I’ve heard some of these things from other writers, but didn’t really understand the concepts completely, or just blew them off, but here is a manuscript (that I personally thought was awesome) that was rejected because of it.

I’ll be shooting up a new topic every few days, so stop by to be baffled by the simplicity of the mistakes that we are all making.

For now go back and look for capitalization in your manuscript. Yes, some pretty major published authors are out there getting away with it, but we don’t have the clout to argue yet, do we?

I hope you get as much out of this as I have!

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39 responses to “A Full Manuscript Rejection, or a Gold Mine?

  1. Pingback: Mid-January Updates | Whimsically Yours

  2. Pingback: Re-writing a manuscript: Stick with it or let it go? | J. Keller Ford ~ Young Adult Fantasy Author

  3. Pingback: Lesson Thirty from a Manuscript Red Line: Finale! Summing it all up | Jennifer M Eaton

  4. Pingback: Lesson Twenty-Nine from a Manuscript Red Line: How’s your synopsis? | Jennifer M Eaton

  5. Pingback: Lesson Twenty Seven from a Manuscrupt Red-Line: Fluidity in Action-The Art of a Good Fight Scene | Jennifer M Eaton

  6. Pingback: Lesson Twenty-Seven from a Manuscript Red Line: Fluidity in Action – How to write a good action scene | Jennifer M Eaton

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  8. Pingback: Lesson Twenty-Six from a Manuscript Red Line: CAPITAL LETTERS | Jennifer M Eaton

  9. Pingback: Lesson Twenty-Five from a Manuscript Red Line: Bullying for Bully’s sake | Jennifer M Eaton

  10. Pingback: Lesson Twenty-Four from a Manuscript Red Line: Remembering where your characters are | Jennifer M Eaton

  11. Pingback: Lesson Twenty-Three from a Manuscript Red Line: Kindle Syndrome | Jennifer M Eaton

  12. Julie Catherine

    I’m still working on the first draft of my very first novel – and this information will be invaluable to me, thank you! ~ Julie 🙂

  13. Pingback: Lesson Twenty-Two from a Manuscript Red Line: Does your Protagonist “Grow Enough?” | Jennifer M Eaton

  14. Pingback: Lesson Twenty-One from a Manuscript Red Line: Common, and Cliché Themes | Jennifer M Eaton

  15. Thank you for sharing your trials and tribulations with me. I do appreciate this, and I have a question, if we’re speaking about God, is it acceptible to type, “HIM”, all capitals or is this a no? Other than this, I have a feeling, your on your way to a published book.

  16. Pingback: Lesson Twenty from a Manuscript Red Line: Don’t make things so easy | Jennifer M Eaton

  17. Pingback: Lesson Nineteen from a Manuscript Red Line: Don’t annoy the reader | Jennifer M Eaton

  18. Pingback: Lesson Eighteen from a Manuscript Red Line:What makes your story Unique? | Jennifer M Eaton

  19. Pingback: Lesson Seventeen from a Manuscript Red Line: Who are we talking to? | Jennifer M Eaton

  20. Pingback: Lesson Sixteen from a Manuscript Red Line: Cutting down your Point of View Characters | Jennifer M Eaton

  21. Pingback: Lesson Fifteen from a Manuscript Red Line: How Many POV’s Can You Have? | Jennifer M Eaton

  22. Pingback: Lesson Fourteen from a Manuscript Red Line: Keeping inside the Point Of View, Part 2 | Jennifer M Eaton

  23. Pingback: Lesson Thirteen from a Manuscript Red Line: Keeping inside the Point Of View, Part 1 | Jennifer M Eaton

  24. Pingback: Lesson Eleven from the Gold Mine Manuscript Red Line: Pre-Telling | Jennifer M Eaton

  25. Pingback: Lesson Ten from a Manuscript Red Line: Girls Rule and Boys Drool | Jennifer M Eaton

  26. Pingback: Lesson Nine from a Manuscript Red Line: Written Any Good (Bad) Cliché’s lately? | Jennifer M Eaton

  27. Pingback: The Cheese Stands Alone: Why Your Book Needs a Hobby « Epicwriter88's Blog

  28. Pingback: Lesson Six from the Gold Mine Manuscript Red Line: Watch that Voice! « Jennifer M Eaton

  29. Pingback: Lesson Five from the Gold Mine Manuscript Red Line: Let’s keep it in the past « Jennifer M Eaton

  30. Pingback: Lesson Four from the Gold Mine Manuscript Red Line: And Then there was a Conjunction, or Was There? « Jennifer M Eaton

  31. Pingback: Lesson Three from the Gold Mine Manuscript Red Line: Action Action, where is the Action? « Jennifer M Eaton

  32. Pingback: Lesson Two from the Gold Mine Manuscript Red Line: Do we like your main character yet? « Jennifer M Eaton

  33. Thanks for being courageous and sharing your comments with us. Your lessons will help us all be better writers.

    • Thanks, Kristina. I just coudn’t just sit here with this wonderful info and not get it out there for everyone. Some of it seems simple, but they are all easy mistakes to make! Special thanks to my BP, too for sharing!

  34. Pingback: Lesson One from the Gold Mine Manuscript Mark-Up: Write Without Looking « Jennifer M Eaton

  35. Isn’t it funny how feedback from a professional seems to mean more, when maybe you’ve actually heard it before, but have been too stubborn to budge?

  36. I love it when I can get feedback from my rejections. The best rejection I’ve received to date, helped me tighten my story and get rid of my original first chapter.