As I said before, I did not win the writing competition I had entered my book into. However, a few days after I received the bad news, I decided to ask the editor for a critique of “I Was Called”. It seemed like a reasonable thing to do. What exactly was my story lacking in? What did I need to improve on?
And here are the editor’s notes, answering the question of why my book didn’t win and what was wrong with it:
“This was another one of those high fantasy novels. Takes place in a world of elves and beasts. It was too far outside what a general audience would read.”
My dear followers, you may not quite understand how relieving it was to see these words. However disappointing it was that I lost the contest, the editor does not imply that there was anything wrong with “I Was Called” on a qualitative level. Instead, he states that it was merely “too far outside what a general audience would read”. Why? Because my novel is “high fantasy”. Does everyone like fantasy? No, not necessarily.
To virtually receive a review and to gain an outside view—especially from an editor and publisher—of my book is immensely satisfying for me. I love that my book was called “high fantasy”, as if “I Was Called” possesses a deeper, more profound sense of fantasy than the average fantasy novel. It makes me feel like I’m on the same plain as Tolkien…well, I won’t let myself get that excited yet 😛
Now, I know that the editor might have been going easy on me and may not have felt like listing everything wrong with my book. I’m sure there are flaws in my writing that he didn’t feel the need to say. But come on now, my dear followers…
…After the ride we’ve been through together, let’s try to stay positive 🙂