Mark Terry

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

A Handy-Dandy Rejection Checklist (for Eric)

November 11, 2008
Dear Author,
There are numerous reasons why we rejected your manuscript, and knowing that you won't believe us anyway, we have elected to provide a checklist of potential reasons for your work's rejection. Feel free to select the ones YOU feel are most appropriate.

__ Your story sucks
__ Your writing sucks
__ Your main character sucks
__ You suck
__ I've already read books with identical plots 439 times today
__ I saw this character on America's Most Wanted last week
__ I saw you on America's Most Wanted last week
__ I saw your agent on America's Most Wanted last week
__ I acquired a book just like it last year and it tanked big-time
__ I acquired a book just like it last year for big bucks, it tanked big-time and that's why I'm working at this crappy publisher this year
__ I acquired a book just like it last year, it did okay, but my boss told me if I ever wasted his money on schlock like it ever again I could kiss my ass goodbye
__ I was sleeping with an author who wrote a book just like it and it ended badly
__ My dog threw up on the manuscript
__ I have room on my list for one book and it's got to be a paranormal romance about vampires
__ I've got PMS really bad and your manuscript pissed me off
__ I've got PMS really bad and your agent really pissed me off
__ I've got PMS really bad and you really pissed me off
__ I've got PMS really bad and everything really pissed me off, but you were a handy scapegoat
__ It's a total lottery, I just pick a manuscript out of the pile at random and decide to publish it and what can I say, today's not your lucky day
__ Go away, you bore me
__ You typed your manuscript in Helvetica and I hate Helvetica
__ You typed your manuscript in Times New Roman and I hate TNR
__ You typed your manuscript in Courier and I hate Courier
__ I didn't like the paper it was printed on
__ I hate authors. Go away.
__ I burned my tongue on my coffee so I rejected your manuscript
__ I had a hangover today and yours was the first manuscript I picked up
__ I had a hangover today and your was the last manuscript I picked up
__ I had a hangover today and I hate you. Go away.
__ I'd really like this job if it weren't for all you authors bugging me with your crap
__ I had sex with someone in the marketing department and I broke it off because I was afraid my wife would find out and now whenever I bring a manuscript to her, she torpedoes it
__ I wanted to have sex with someone in the marketing department, but they told me if I ever brought one of your manuscripts to them again, they'd never have sex with me
__ I wanted to have sex, but instead, I rejected your manuscript
__ I hate you. Go away.
__ I only accept manuscripts on days with an R in them
__ Too many words
__ Not enough words
__ Wrong words
__ I hate you. Go away.
__ You write like shit.
__ You are shit.
__ I feel like shit.
__ I should have gotten a degree in computer science instead of 15th Century Spanish Poetry
__ I don't make enough money to put up with your crap
__ Do you know how much a one-room flat in Manhattan costs? 
__ I hate you. Go away.

6 Comments:

Anonymous Eric Mayer said...

Thanks. A classic! Although you missed one of my favorite rejection reasons, for an essay, scrawled on the bottom of a standard slip:

No more grandfather stories!!!

3:12 PM  
Blogger Zoe Winters said...

hahahaha nice!

And I resemble that paranormal romance remark! ha!

Also, clearly we can learn from this that editors are watching too much "America's Most Wanted" and not doing enough reading.

7:49 PM  
Blogger Erica Orloff said...

Um . . . .

Just want to point out, a lot of these rejections have to do with SEX. Feeling lonely, Mark?

LOL!
E

2:29 PM  
Blogger Zoe Winters said...

bwahahahahaha Erica!

3:12 PM  
Blogger Mark Terry said...

Jeez, Erica. I'm a guy!

'nuf said.

5:10 PM  
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5:37 PM  

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