Monday, July 23, 2012

Ouch, Smash, Rejection!

So I got my first rejection on my full manuscript. Had to happen sooner or later, but ouch, smash, break! That's the sound of my ego hitting the hard fucking floor. I'm honored I caught the attention of a NY time's best selling agent from a major literary agency in the first place. And, um, the fact my rejection was open-ended: "would you be willing to revise/resubmit or do you have any other material for me to review?" should make me happy. But it doesn't. 

I don't know. I guess this tells me I'm a good writer. The agent said so herself. But she thought there was too much gore and fantastical elements. Subjective criticisms. Fair enough. And I'm not taking it personally, but still... 

I guess I'm just looking for some love from the horror community. It's such a hard sell these days. And at times I feel unappreciated as a horror writer. I'm not a traditional hack-n-slash type. Nor am I  a psychological thriller either. I blend horror, the supernatural, fantasy, and just general "hard-to-define-ness" to my stories. I don't like being boxed into a single genre, and I think that shows in my writing. 

Sticking to your guns is a hard thing to do. If I was so desperate to be published, I would write some cheesy YA urban fantasy about a boring white suburban girl and her equally boring but predictable half-vampire/werewolf/zombie/dragon/whatever-the-hell-ever boyfriend. Of course all of the characters would be straight. And I wouldn't even bother trying to incorporate feminism, racial/sexual identity, or social politics into the subtextual plot. Teenagers don't think. Like duh. Totally whatever, right?

I have a voice. And one day someone will listen to it. I never set out to be a NY times bestseller or super famous. I just want someone...ANYONE to listen to me. To show that I exist. That I was here. That's all.

To be fair, the agent who rejected me mentioned none of these sociopolitical issues as a factor. Strange, she didn't even bring it up. In fact, she asked me to write a Voodoo-themed YA story for her. I'm bitching about two completely unrelated topics: an under appreciation for horror AND political fiction. Anyway, I'm keeping the ball rolling on these queries. This grueling, soul-draining process... Onwards I go! 


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