Posted by: Schuyler R. Thorpe | December 28, 2013

No Help Here Either…

I commented to my wife about my recent query letter issues and she says: “Why do you even listen to those assholes?”

Because these people are supposed to be experts and I’m the lonely noob in this business? I dunno. But I noticed that when I gave this other person my newest query letter, she responded with outright hostility and negative criticism.

In fact–as far as I can remember–everyone who I’ve tried to approach with my work or suggestions has been met with outright hostility and negative criticism. But seldom does anyone sit down and try to give me helpful pointers on how to improve.

It’s always been: “Your writing sucks!” or (my personal fav): “You should quit writing!”

So is it any small wonder why I’ve been doing this whole thing solo? When you are expecting zero help from the online community at large, the next best course of action is to simply wing it and improvise–based on the available information you have at your disposal.

And do the work yourself to best of your ability.

So what have I been stuck with? Too much imagination and too much creativity with my writing.

And apparently–from what I’ve witnessed these past 17 years–agents and publishers really hate that in query letters.

But what can you do?



  1. I suggest going postal on the keyboard. Burn it across your words until they sear anything they touch. You may also want to punch an agent they next time you meet one. You’ll know them by the bowtie and the attache case. Wankers.

    Post some writing, I’ll give some proper critique if I can. If it’s a poem, though, I’m bailing. Fuck poetry.

    • I have poetry, but that’s not what I’m trying to publish.

      • Gimme something else then. Short stories? That’s what I do. I will give you feedback as best as I can.

      • I’ll post a couple chapters to my fantasy novel. I haven’t done any short stories in god knows how many years.

      • I’m good with fantasy, actually. Ever read Donaldson’s Thomas Covenant stuff? I just picked up the last book in the entire series. So far, it’s a bit lame.

        I have a fantasy-type novel in progress myself, actually. I usually distract myself with short stories of questionable quality. I like to think that I save my best writing for the novels, which is not really true.

      • I haven’t read that many books in years past. Too many disappointments. Only in the past year, where there a couple worth writing home about. But as I’ve said, a scant few were good. The rest have been nothing but garbage taking up space.

        My latest fantasy novel is the first one I’ve completed in six years due to chronic depression and other issues. But I’m hoping that people will enjoy the effort I put into writing it rather than be total assholes and start complaining. Y’know?

      • Dude, people love complaining. It’s what they do best. Can only promise that I’ll be honest and constructive. But I’m no expert.

        Is it weird that I feel that I can write a better book than most of the ones out there that I could read? I think I may be a narcissist or something. But whatever.

      • I can handle the complaints. I’m just not used to the stupidheads that just bitch about everything wrong with the book and then act like it’s my fault for writing it.

        I’m in the same boat as you are. I can write way better stuff than what’s out in the market. It’s a sad testament when agents will go for the sub-primes and pass on the talent just to make a quick buck.

      • Well, I don’t know if I’m a true talent, but I know what you mean. Anyway, post your chapters and let me have a look. I don’t promise immediate response, but I’m off for a few days so I do have some time on my hands.

      • I’m posting now. The book jacket is actually my pitch to agents.

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