Zane Grey ignored this advice. There are believed to be over 250 million copies of his books in print.
“The girl doesn’t, it seems to me, have a special perception or feeling which would lift that book above the ‘curiosity’ level.” With an additional 15 rejections, The Diary of Anne Frank was eventually acquired by Doubleday, who brought the translation to the world. 25 million copies have been sold.
“We feel that we don’t know the central character well enough.” Following this comment in a rejection, J.D. Salinger re-wrote The Catcher in the Rye, which has seen sales in excess of 65 million copies.
“Too different from other juveniles on the market to warrant its selling.” An excerpt from a rejection letter sent to Dr. Seuss, who became the 9th best-selling fiction author of all time.
“I recommend that it be buried under a stone for a thousand years.” Shunned by major publishers, Vladimir Nabokov landed a deal with Olympia Press for his novel, Lolita. The first 5,000 copies sold quickly and the book has now seen estimated sales of 50 million.
My plan? Keep writing. Edit, edit, edit. And never give up!
How about you?
By Janet Fogg
Janet is the author of Soliloquy, an award-winning historical romance, and co-author of the military history best seller, Fogg in the Cockpit.