Why Are Authors Rejected?

I absolutely hate the title of this blog, because it focuses on shortcomings, rather than focusing on an author’s gift and talents. Nothing about this blog title is uplifting at all. In fact, I should have changed it to, “Why Are Authors Accepted?”

In the world of publishing, the focus is all wrong and I am part of the problem. Of all the blogs that I have written over the years, I would say that 80% are about fixing common and even complex problems that prevent authors from succeeding. Personally, everything I do each day is to improve my weaknesses.

What I should be focusing on is improving existing strengths and gifts. Literary agents, publishers, and readers should notice your talents, instead of focusing on your weaknesses.

In spite of this, that is not how it works.

Subconsciously, literary agents and publishers go over your query letters and manuscripts with the idea of looking for mistakes, weaknesses, and problems with your writing. In fact, they are looking for a reason to reject you.

Readers scan over books to find something that jumps out and relates to them personally. But readers can also subconsciously focus on a reason that they should not purchase your book. They are looking for a reason to reject the idea that spending money on your book is a good thing.

I’m going to write the two most important sentences in this blog: “If you believe that everyone is focused on your weaknesses, you are likely to give up.” In contrast, “If you believe that when it comes to your writing, everyone is focused on your talent, you will survive any obstacle and succeed.”

Imagine a rejection letter that sounded like this: “We love how your writing style is quick, powerful, and in the readers face. However, we are looking for stories that move a little slower and are toned down.”

How could an author feel bad about a rejection like that? The focus is on your intensity, not your flaws. Your awesome writing style did not fit that particular agency, but that is the only reason you were rejected. You will continue your search with enthusiasm.

I suppose there is one obvious problem with this theory…you cannot control the thoughts of literary agents, publishers, and readers.

Actually, I’m not so sure about that.

Over the last five years, I can count on one hand how many people posted something negative on my blogs, Facebook posts, Tweets, and LinkedIn updates. How is that possible? I focus on something positive everyday. I think about what will give an author confidence and renewed energy. I never…never…never…post anything negative. (That’s not entirely true. I did bash Fifty Shades of Grey, but can you blame me? I was baffled and irritated like every other author in the world.)

Speaking of that, if you receive a bad review, then focus on the fact that you actually were deemed worthy of getting a review.

If you did not win a writing contest, focus on the fact that you had something worth entering a writing contest.

When writing query letters, develop eye-catching-power-sentences that focuses on your talents and your entertaining story. Use proven examples, theories, and concepts, rather than your opinion.

In your marketing plan, focus on what would energize your target audience. Also, ways to benefit your target audience so that they will concentrate on your strengths and knowledge.

When writing stories, build on the areas that you are brilliant, rather than trying to fix the areas that you are weak.

If you can spin the publishing world to think only of your talents, opportunities will arrive in bundles…

Ron Knight

Show off your talents in the UP Authors Fiction Challenge starting February 1st and win $1,000 and tons of promotion!


Ron Knight

Facebook Twitter