Constructive Rejection


A second rejection. But it’s constructive, and I only had to wait two weeks. Let me know if you can recommend a recent memoir for me to read. I really like Seal Press, so I was a little disappointed about this one.


Hi Lorraine,

Thank you for sending your proposal. You’ve done an amazing job with it. you have a very compelling story. It’s incredibly unique and wild and interesting. Seal has a strong history of publishing parenting books and we’re always looking for fresh angles. But we’re also looking for projects that are universal in nature. There are aspects of your project that I love and aspects of it that are problematic in that they’re so unique to your family and your situation. it’s hard to figure out the ins and outs of how to make your own story relatable to other families, but as it stands now there’s not enough for the reader. There are places where there are glimpses of you giving the takeaway, but there’s definitely not enough. The key component of memoir is the takeaway element.

So as it stands now there’s not enough of that. I would suggest you read other memoir in this category to wrap your mind around what exactly I’m talking about because sometimes it can involve such a subtle shift in how you tell the story. I think you and your story have so much promise, and it’s not the proposal that I’m reacting to but the sample writing.

I wish you the very best of luck with this endeavor. As I said, you and your project are great. it just needs some work in the execution.

Very best,



Brooke Warner

Senior Editor, Seal Press


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