Monday, October 21, 2013

Which shoe are you?

Rejections. I know, lovely word, right? I'd say most, if not every, writer has been there. It's part of the process, but it doesn't have to be a negative thing. When an agent gets your query and you get a rejection, it's not about whether they are rejecting you. They don't even know you! It's just not a right fit.

Let's go shoe shopping for a minute. We walk into a shoe store, smell the leather and instantly start to browse. Right away you see a pair of alligator high tops with stiletto heals and...your lunch threatens to come back up. Someone else might like them--in fact, there's another shopper dying to buy a pair--but you know right away that they are not for you. Are you rejecting the person who designed them? No. They just aren't for you.

Right next to the alligator getup is a pair of bright red pumps. You like pumps. And you like red. But...this red is a little too, oh...fruit punch? You're more of a velvet cake type of red lover. So, you considered it, but after a short time you knew it just wasn't going to work. Rejection.

You abandon that shoe stand and meander to the back of the store where you find a pair of black flats, genuine leather, stiff soles. Right away you're interested. It fits your style, so you pick it up. They're not too heavy, not too light, the leather is smooth yet worn enough to know that it won't take too long to break in. In thirty seconds, you've found a chair, kicked off the oldies, and slipped on the flats. At first they seem to fit just perfect, but then you stand up. Three steps later, you know your toes are going to suffer and your ankles will need something short of physical therapy after extended wear. Rejection. Not instant, but in the end, they just weren't right for you.

You're about to give up, walk out, stop wearing shoes, but then you see the pink cowboy boots. Just the right mix of three parts red with one part white--yes, you like your pink a little dark. Your friends can't stand the shoes, but what do they know? The shoes are quite similar to something else you own, but different enough that you'd be an idiot not to consider them. Before you can even say cowb--they're on! And they feel just as good as they look. No, they are a hundred times better! You love them enough that you don't even take them off to purchase them. That's when you know you've found the right pair of shoes.

The others weren't bad. They might have been perfect for someone else...but they just weren't the right fit.

And that's the key. You want an agent the's a right fit just as much as they want a writer that's right for them. Rejection can be hard. But don't take it personally. You'd hate for an agent to pick you only to realize after a few days that maybe you weren't the right fit. 

Do your homework and sale your shoes at the right store. Find the agent that's right for you. And if they like what you've created, they might not ever let you go :) 


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