Would You Rather – Rejection or No Response?

A brick wall – what I feel like I’m talking to when pitching agents.


In my quest to have my book Musing Mediterranean picked up by an agent, the only thing I find more disappointing than rejection is the far more common – no response.

No News is Good News?

As a writer, lack of response is something I’ve come to expect and the old adage “no news is good news” really doesn’t work here. There comes a point when you just want an answer. But agents, editors and publishers are inundated with pitches, queries and proposals. I realize it would be impossible for them to respond to each and every one.

I’ve heard stories from fellow writers who have received so many rejection letters, they say they could wallpaper a room with them. Well, how do I wallpaper a room with nothing, nada, zilch? Am I jealous of their rejections?

On the other hand, I get it and may actually be guilty of it myself. In today’s day and age, it’s nearly impossible to get back to every email, text or Facebook message. Not to mention the oft forgotten voice message! I so often lose track, it’s laughable. Thank God I don’t use Snapchat.

Just Respond Already!

I think it’s interesting that my daughters are appalled if they happen to notice I haven’t immediately responded to a text or email. Mom, they’ll say, so and so texted you three minutes ago and you haven’t responded.

As overly attached as they all are to their social media, they seem to have mastered the notion that a timely response is not only desired, but expected. In their world, no response is considered an all-time insult.


And so I’ve come to actually get excited when a rejection comes in. Those I’ve received have been thoughtful and helpful. They also let me know that my work has been seen and considered. I’ll take that over a lifetime in limbo any day.

Have you run into the no response battle? How do you deal with it?

Don’t worry, if you don’t respond I won’t be offended.


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7 years ago

I would much rather be responded to! For me and my new adventure of online dating, it stinks to send someone a message and get no response at all. If I’m brave enough to reach out, a simple “I’m not interested” would be appreciated. Trust me, I’m ok with rejection!! Just give it to me straight!!!

McLain E. Bennett
7 years ago

I agree, I would rather someone give to me straight, put me out of my misery, or simply say, “no thank you” than allowing me to hang on to something that wasn’t real and give me a false sense of hope. At least with a rejection, I can move on, possible gleam some insights, get some positive feedback, and move forward! I really hate not knowing and the anxiety and anticipation!