That's right--the big R for REJECTION. Ho hum. I had a partial for my most recent ms out, Coffee & Donuts, with a really great agent who would've been like a dream. She had my partial for almost three months, and just responded a few days ago with the dreaded, "Thanks, but no thanks."
She was actually really nice in her response. She took the time to personalize it, and stated she didn't have any constructive critisizm to give because everything was fine. She said my dialogue and writing were good, and that she loved the premise. She couldn't offer representation because she wasn't passionate about the story.
Oh, for the love of God! Really??? They gotta be passionate??? LOL! It's always something, huh? Well, a year or so ago I'd have been racking my brain trying to figure out what that meant. But now, after so much exposure to other unpublished stories, I can honestly say I understand what she means. I can read a story that's well written with strong characters, but would it be something I'd normally select to read? A lot of times, no. It goes back to that subjective taste.
So this agent advised me to continue looking in hopes I will find the agent who is pssionate about it. I was really hoping she was the one. :( But she also encouraged me to submit to her again with other stories. So at least she left me with a sliver or hope. At any rate, it's good to know my work doesn't suck.
Here's the deal, though. I want to move on. I know persistence is key, but I've got another story begging me to tell it. I really want to move on, but I love Coffee & Donuts and feel like it needs a chance, too. So I've decided to revamp the first few chapters (based on some beta feedback) and possibly change the name. Then, I'll query my list of other dream agents and see what happens. If no luck, I may just upload it to Amazon and see if I can get it out there as an eBook. Why not, right? May as well get my work out there to be read while I'm moving on to other stories. I've got a notebook full of story ideas and I hate wasting time.
Which leads me to my next question.... how long does one really need to spend on a single ms? What do you think? How long do you toil away at perfecting your story before setting it aside and moving on?
I know working on a new story will help lift my spirits. I'm not totally bummed (maybe a little). I understand this is my path and this story was a stepping stone to get me where I need to be. I'm always learning and that's the important thing.
I'd love to hear your thoughts. :)