Wonders a Snarkling who's totting up her rejection letters
What do you do after 100 rejections?
This follows an earlier post wherein I said you have to query 100 times before you give up.
This is a good question. Recalling I have a client with 81 rejection letters (neatly filed, bless his heart) and a contract from me, my point was it only takes one agent to say yes.
If you've got 100 rejections here's the first thing to do:
sort them into 1. Form letters and 2. Non form letters.
Then read what the non form letters say. Did anyone make suggestions? Did they tell you that your plot was stale, your hero sux, your paper smells bad (you'd be surprised all you cigarette smokers!) or something, anything that will give you some insight of why this duck isn't flying?
If you sent out 100 query letters and have NO feedback, you need to find someone who will read your work and tell you what's wrong - cause something IS wrong. From the Snarkometer pages you can see that there is divergence of opinion on SOME things, but not all. If you've got 100 agents essentially agreeing your work is such that they won't even write to say its good but not marketable...the problem isn't publishing, and it's not agents. Disagree if you will, but I believe that's the snarkly honest truth.
Enroll in a writing class, find a crit group, pay an editor, go to a writing conference.
Maybe the next round of Snarkometer should be reserved for people who have 30 or more rejections and we'll read ten pages. Is that a good idea? (It's not happening anytime soon if it is).
If you do have feedback, pay attention to it. Maybe you ARE writing the wrong thing. Maybe you're NOT a good writer. it's not a character flaw and it doesn't mean you're going to hell. Writing is a skill and can be improved. If you're not listening to what people tell you, and you're not making changes, or experimenting, you're behaving like a two year old who thinks saying "I want it" is the answer to "no".
My client with 81 rejections didn't send the same query letter each time. He varied it as people responded to him, and as he read books on query letters. If you simply send the same thing over and over again, you're on the road to madness.
One of the blog readers has his own blog called 756Agents and Counting. This has clearly become some sort of epic quest beyond the publication of the novel itself. I don't advise querying past 100 for any reason unless you're looking to be the Morgan Spurlock of publishing.