Rejection Letter Bingo: The Game All Writers Play! | Writer’s Relief

Dec 20, 2023 | Rejection

Rejection Letter Bingo: The Game All Writers Play! | Writer’s Relief

If you’re a writer, sooner or later (and more often than you’d like), you’ll receive a rejection. We know it stings, but it’s actually a good sign—it means you’re sending your well-written, quality work out there and getting one step closer to an acceptance with each “no thank you.” At Writer’s Relief, we know that rejections aren’t personal and don’t always mean your work was poorly targeted. In fact, many are often form letters! Here’s how to put a positive spin on your rejections: Play Rejection Letter Bingo! It’s a game all writers play (whether they like it or not) and might even make you smile.

Play Rejection Letter Bingo!

Mark off each of these common phrases you may have received in a rejection letter. Get five in a row vertically, horizontally, or diagonally and you win!

Treat yourself to a cookie, and then get back to writing, knowing you’re part of an honorable club: Agatha Christie submitted for four years before she got an acceptance, Alex Haley received 200 rejections, and Jack London got a whopping 600 rejections, just to name a few!

Standard phrases used in form rejection letters from literary agents and editors of literary journals:

I’m sorry but your work isn’t a good fit for us.

We found a lot to like, but we’re going to say no at this time.

I don’t think I’m the right person for this project.

Unfortunately, we’ve met our cap for this month’s issue, so we’re going to decline.

This isn’t right for our audience.

Best of luck in your future endeavors.

Though we won’t be accepting your work at this time, we encourage you to submit again in the future.

We wish you luck finding a publisher for your work.

Unfortunately, we’re moving in a different direction, which is why we must reject your work.

Although we enjoyed reading this, we won’t be accepting your work.

I am only considering (something else) at this time.

Due to high demand, we are currently not accepting queries at this time.

Unfortunately, we are not taking new clients at this time, so I’ll have to pass.

Thank you for thinking of me, but I’ll have to pass.

This didn’t strike a chord.

No, thank you, but thanks for writing to me about your novel.

Unfortunately, this is not something that is right for me. I wish you success with your writing.

Thanks for contacting me about your work. Unfortunately, I don’t think it’s quite a fit for me as an agent. However, I would encourage you to contact other agents about your work, as often it’s just a matter of getting your work to the right people.

Thanks for this. I’m afraid this would not be for me, but good luck and best wishes elsewhere.

Thank you so much for sending me your query. Although your novel sounds intriguing, I’m sorry to say that I don’t believe I am the right agent for you. You deserve an enthusiastic representative, so I recommend that you pursue other agents.

This is really tempting; however, I am afraid that we must pass.

Thanks so such for querying us, but we are unsure that this premise would work in this tight market.

This didn’t pique my interest.

Did you read our journal?

Keep in mind, agents and editors are people. They have varying likes and dislikes, and sometimes they have bad days. It’s nothing personal.

If you’d like to ensure you’re targeting the very best markets for your work, the researchers at Writer’s Relief can help boost your odds of getting an acceptance. Learn more about our services, and submit your writing sample to our Review Board today!

Whether you want to take the traditional publishing route or are thinking about self-publishing, we can help. Give us a call, and we will point you in the right direction!


Question: How many of these form letter phrases have you received in rejections?