Wednesday, April 8, 2009

This and then... this.

I wrote something about my mental state on a very private board in a very private place and I think it came out well.

Someone responded with this.

"Really, you need to read tropic of cancer and any Hemmingway book from life in Europe late 20s early 30s.... you sound just like all those authors. ... er#PPA1,M1 Just read the first paragraph"

Was I just compared to Hemmingway and Henry Miller? Are you kidding me? Holy cow did I need that this week.

I will soldier on!

What do I mean by that?


Dear Jamie Wakefield,
It is with kind thanks that we respond to your submission to The ... Literary Agency. We apologize for the delay in our response, and we thank you for your patience. Please be assured that we have carefully considered your project. Unfortunately, we don't feel the manuscript is right for us at this time.
Because we receive more than two hundred submissions per week, it is necessary to be extremely selective on a very subjective basis. We wish you the best of luck. There are numerous excellent agents that might be the right fit for your manuscript. Don't give up!

First - 200 submissions a week.

As Time magazine said "There are more people who want to be writers than there are people who want to be readers."


I read over my query letter at the bottom of the rejection and thought "Nope. No way I can make that better. I'd take that letter to bed and sleep with it if I could. " Then I read the sample chapter I also sent them and thought "Really fucking good. This is even better than I thought it was."

I'm quite the egomaniac. Oh wait, some more feedback -

"Thank you for your query. We appreciate you sharing your work with our agency.
We did review your proposal, and unfortunately we are going to pass on representing it. The premise just didn't resonate with us as much as we would have liked. We wish you the best in your search for representation. Your book deserves an agent who can put the requisite enthusiasm behind it.

We appreciate the hard work and diligence needed to get in the door, and since this is a highly subjective business, you may well find success elsewhere. We wish you all the best with your writing.

Those are some of the nicer rejections.

I had more to add to this, but can't remember what it was. I also wanted to answer all the comments in the global warming post but my heart has sudenly decided that it wants to beat at a hundred and fifty beats a minute for no reason and I need to walk around a bit.


  1. What BS. Sorry Jamie. You know I still buy each Stephen King book as it comes out, and they have been on a downward spiral for years. Yet they keep getting published and I keep reading. There is so much pure shite out there that gets published, and then there are people like you making fun, compelling content, and you cannot get it published. I don't get it.

  2. It's all economics Chris. You said it yourself that you buy every Stephen King book that comes out, that's money in the bank to publishers. It's hard to break into the biz when they're not sure if you're going to be a gold mine. I imagine it's even harder when a massive recession is going on.

  3. Thank you Chris and Joshie.

    I have a ton of comments to respond to and am really not spending enough time doing so. But seriously, the positive comments coming in about my writing are what I need this week and I thank you.

    Chris - thanks man. Made my day. Seriously. Thank you.

    Sadly, I couldn't agree with you more. I used to love Stephen King and I think he has been declining for years. I never want to hurt anyone's feelings but seriously, his stuff is shit these days. Being an alcoholic, I understand his problems with substance abuse and I think I suck for saying this, but he was a better writer before his friends confronted him about his coke and alcohol problems.

    Thank you for your support. I don't know what they're (agents)thinking and I don't care. I'll make it eventually. Period. Bank on it. And hopefully it will bring some small satisfaction to my readers now to be able to say in the future "Yeah? You like Jamie's latest book? Well I knew him when."
    (picture a proud black woman's fingers snapping from shoulder to hip.)