I’m sorry, I need to rant just a little about something that is one of my biggest pet peeves – If you’re rejected by New York or any publisher really, it’s not because you’re “too edgy” or “too sexy” or “too out of the box” It’s not because NY doesn’t “understand” you. It’s most definitely NOT because the RWA “hates sex” or is “jealous” of erotic romance.
Bluntly: They’re not jealous of you. Most of them don’t even know who you are and if they did, they wouldn’t fucking care enough to engage in some sort of conspiracy to get your books rejected.
Authors get rejected. It’s a fact of life for all of us. Good books get rejected. Sherrilyn Kenyon shopped her first Dark Hunter book for a long assed time, getting rejected over and over. It wasn’t because people were jealous or that she was too edgy, it was wrong book, wrong editor, wrong time. And I hope every time she wins an award or hits the bestseller list, she thinks, “HA! Editor X, who’s laughing now” She’s probably too nice to think that, but if I were her, I would, LOL.
And while I’m ranty:
The popularity of a certain sub-genre is not at fault for the woes of other sub-genres. In case it’s escaped people’s notice, popular culture has this thing called trends. So at any given time, something will be more popular than something else. But paranormals are not the cause for your western not selling. Readers wanting to see more vamps means more vamps get bought, which means the market for other things gets tighter. In another year, there’ll be a new trend (though paranormals, much like erotic romance, aren’t going away, they’re leveling out, but there will always be a demand for them) and something else will sell like hotcakes for a year and level out.
Right now, erotic romance has bottomed out and the market has tightened up. IMO, this is a good thing because (hopefully) the quality stays higher. Erotic romance leveling out is not because the RWA hates sex. God, can we please, please just stop saying that forever? The RWA does not hate sex in romance novels. Take a look at the shelves – they’re filled with very sexy romances and those romances do very well.
The popularity of erotics also is not making your sweet romance not sell. There’s a market for them, though it’s tighter than it was a few years ago. Again I refer the right honorable readers to the point I make above about trends.
Our business is media – media is highly dependent on trends. This is a fact you cannot escape. You can pretend your book didn’t sell because NY isn’t ready for you, or you can accept that the book just isn’t right for that editor or house right now. And it may never be. Guess what? Sometimes when a book gets rejected it’s because the book sucked. I know, it’s hard to face that – it sucks, but sometimes it’s true.
One last little thing before I stop:
If you don’t like the RWA, fine. Don’t join it. I certainly have my own issues with them and have spent the last week here blogging about that. But why do people who hate the RWA who aren’t members show up in every freaking RWA discussion to inform everyone you don’t like the RWA, have no intention of joining and never will?
FYI, RWA has nothing to do with what NY publishing houses buy. So every last RWA member could hate sex in romance and it would still have not a damned thing to do with why your book got rejected.
Things happen to us and we seek to give those events meaning or what is the point of doing what we do? I get that. It’s human. But truly, I cannot read another loop comment about how your story got rejected because someone is out to get you.
It’s a rejection. They happen. You’re not a special snowflake. Suck it up and write something else.