Ask The Editor

March 10, 2009

What’s worse than a rejection letter? A public rejection “tweet.”

As if it weren’t stressful enough to send out that manuscript you worked on for years and then wait for an agent’s or editor’s reply. Now some authors have to fear public shaming. A couple of literary agents, Lauren E. MacLeod and Colleen Lindsay,  have been mocking the pitch letters of aspiring authors on Twitter.

Okay, so not every pitch is a hit. But, c’mon guys, play nice. This is the author’s baby you’re ridiculing. It may seem like a hoot to you but put yourself in the writer’s place.

Meanwhile, authors, make certain that you follow an agent’s guidelines to avoid incurring wrath and ridicule.

“I know writing and querying are hard,” MacLeod tweeted. “So my queryfails have been chosen from people who did not follow submission guidelines.”



  1. Anita, I hope you have not been subjected to public shaming. You’re too good.

    Comment by Don Kaufman — March 17, 2009 @ 6:07 am | Reply

    • Oh, lord, no. I’m merely commenting on a story I found in the U.K. media.

      Most of the authors who were singled out appeared to be newbies — unfamiliar with publishing conventions. And, I can see why agents might be annoyed at not having their guidelines followed.

      Nevertheless, these agents were out of line. The uproar in various media should convince them to behave more professionally in the future, no matter what their opinion of submissions.

      Comment by editorialconsultant — March 17, 2009 @ 8:47 am | Reply

  2. Ugh! That sounds so unprofessional! Sounds like playground bullies grown up.
    I just came across your blog via BlogHer…I really like it! Keep up the good work!

    Comment by Heather — April 7, 2009 @ 8:54 am | Reply

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