Friday, October 18, 2013

The kindest rejection letter for BLOOD PROMISE so far

Dear Joyce,

Thank you once again for sending BLOOD PROMISE to us to read. Clare Wallace and I have both really enjoyed it.

Sadly though, after some discussion we've had to come to the reluctant conclusion that we can’t offer to represent it at the moment. There are many good things about it but as it stands there are just a few missing elements that mean overall it isn't quite right for us.

I’m sorry that this is a disappointing outcome for you, but you should have an agent who is very passionate about your story and Clare just doesn't feel strongly enough about it as it is right now.

We really don’t want you to be too downhearted about this, though. The opening in particular is so strong and beautifully written and clearly demonstrates how much potential you have as a writer. The book overall has an engaging tone, your characters are appealing and the dialogue feels natural. And you have a really good instinct for keeping the chapters short and ending them on a note of intrigue, to keep the reader turning the page.

There were just a few small concerns that we identified. The writing doesn't always maintain that magic that it has in the opening chapters. In a way you've almost shot yourself in the foot with the strength of those chapters, as the reader’s expectation after that is so high.

There are occasional problems with the pace. While the dialogue is well-done (which isn’t an easy feat and one many established authors still sometimes struggle with, so you should congratulate yourself on that), there is too much of it at times. Perhaps cutting down on some of the talking and injecting more action would help to up the pace, particularly in the middle section.

And while the voice of April definitely has its own quirky feel – which is great - that differentiates it from that of Sean and Ian, the two boys are bit too similar at times. The voice in their chapters needs a little bit of work to keep them separate in the reader’s mind.

I hope that all of this makes sense. If you have any questions please feel free to come back to me. If you did decide to make some revisions based on these notes then Clare has said that she would be very happy to take another look at it. it goes without saying that if you produce any new work we would be delighted to consider it.

Otherwise, we very warmly wish you all the best in the future.



So here I am now, working on BLOOD PROMISE again like a girl on fire. You call it insanity, I call it renewed purpose.

At least I have slightly better luck than Snoopy!


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