By A Strand

I got my first rejection letter. Actually it was an email which at least means technology is helping publishers to reject authors quicker. A few days after reviewing a PDF copy of my book, I received the following response from Strand Books, in Union Square:

Hi Raymond, It is my turn to apologize for the delay in my response! I have a non-normal weekend of Monday and Tuesday off, so I spend a lot of Wednesday doing catch-up on e-mails. On a personal note, I’m so sorry to hear about the loss of your beloved friend-it’s the worst feeling in the world and in honor of your companion (and one of my own, who passed some time ago),  I made a small donation to a cat rescue that helped me to find a new friend. I hope your heart heals soon!

Unfortunately, I’m going to pass on The Great Meeting Room at this time. While we do try to include titles from small press and independent publishers when we can, I’d be concerned that this title wouldn’t get the attention it deserves-not because of the content, but because of our current space and selection. I do sincerely wish you the best with this title, and in all your future endeavors. Thanks so much for reaching out! All best, Stella

In the children’s section there happened to be an empty space which coincidentally would fit my book perfectly. Photo: Stewart Borden

At first I was upset, I mean after all there technically is the space but her email reminded me of a critical part of book publishing and that’s the marketing machine behind the book. Who is going to sell my book? Certainly that’s what Stella was thinking as she flipped through the PDF copy I sent her. Sure it’s a fantastic book but there’s nobody telling people that and so just having it on the shelf is not enough. They are likely looking for an author who can drive traffic into their stores to buy the book. Despite the rejection it
was still nice to have a dialogue, even it was short, with someone at the company because know I know it was at least considered. I may approach them again but for now I’ll just send a thank you note and focus my attention on trying to get some holiday business directed to Glad Day Bookshop back in Toronto. If nothing else, my book has at least one loving home the holidays.

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