Dear Lit Loves,
I wish I had better news. I have queried my heart out for a memoir/narrative regarding my own disabling illnesses and how those disabling bad boys taught me to be more of a feminist and a discerning medical advocate, not to mention handle living with the ups and down of rare disorders. I have no literary representation as of yet. I am beginning to think maybe literary agents just send out tweets and post lists of various genres they would like to acquire just because those types of acquisitions are what is trending now. Seriously, I just received a rejection from a literary agent who said she needed to give her acquisition list a serious overhaul so she wanted nonfiction queries especially those of the #MeToo and #OwnVoices movement and I don't know how you could figure after reading my proposal that those two hashtags do not shine brightly throughout my manuscript. Wait, that's right, I remember now. The literary agent never asked for the book proposal and manuscript; therefore, it is not possible anyone could have read my book proposal or my manuscript. This is frustrating as hell, let me tell you.
Next, I receive a rejection not from the literary agent to whom I sent my query and first two chapters, but her assistant who says the agency has discussed my book and they do not see a story arc and it is hard to sell a hybrid memoir and narrative book presently. First, they never had the full manuscript or book proposal to be able to ascertain the full story arc so I find that just a bogus excuse. Yes, it is most definitely hard to sell a narrative and memoir hybrid manuscript, but hell, it's also hard to plant 60 gladiolus bulbs in one hour, but hell, I did it because I wanted to and I knew I could do it. Maybe we don't have any fearless literary agents who take risks anymore or at least that's what I am beginning to think. Maybe they all want to cater to the writer who can make them the quick buck.
And finally, there's the literary agent who rejected my query in fourteen minutes. Yes, you read that correctly. Quick turnaround time, but obviously no real thoughts given to the substance and motivations for writing the book. I'll remember that and not query that literary agent ever again. Never. That's it. You handle my query like that and as my good friend says, "Ya dead to me! Understand?!!" Honestly, querying to find a literary agent is like dealing with the mafia or better yet professional wrestling. I actually had a dream where I was in a cage match against a literary agent. Last person left standing wins. I won, but since I've watched so many cage matches and know so many wrestling moves, the literary agent was unconscious at the conclusion of the match, but survived; however, he/she refused to represent me because he/she was afraid I would not take refusals or constructive feedback well when my book proposal or manuscript was evaluated!!
And finally, there is the literary agent who is OPEN to submissions. I query him/her. I receive a rejection because he/she has too many current clients to even consider much less seriously read my book proposal and manuscript. Straight up, hand on my father's grave, that is what the email rejection he/she sent me read. I was like, well, why the hell do you keep yourself OPEN to submissions if you are too busy with your current clients?? Try closing to submissions till you can seriously consider a writer's work. Really, it's not that difficult. I do not send you a book proposal or manuscript till it is in its finest shape possible so do I not deserve your undivided attention when you go to read my book proposal and manuscript??
Stay tuned to Is There An Actual Literary Agent That Can Handle Grace Sutherlin??
Till my next post,