Is this rejection letter from Sydney publisher the most brutal ever?

Publishers back in the 1920s were incredibly blunt when it came to letting writers down.

 

That's the view shared by some after a recently surfaced letter to an aspiring poet was described as a "punch in the guts".

The note was sent nearly 90 years ago by publisher Angus and Robertson Ltd to an FC Meyer of Katoomba, but resurfaced this week after it was shared on Twitter by the account Letters of Note.

"All other rejection letters can step down. We have a winner," the account tweeted.

The offending letter reads: “Dear Sir, No, you may not send us your verses, and we will not give you the name of another publisher.

The letter was shared on social media. Source: @LettersOfNote/ Twitter

"We hate no rival publisher sufficiently to ask you to inflict them on him.

“The specimen poem is simply awful. In fact, we have never seen worse. Yours faithfully, Angus and Robertson Ltd.”

According to the Twitter account, the letter was sent in by a person named Kylie Parkinson, and even if the publisher did not enjoy the poet's work some believe the method of rejection was a bit too harsh.

"Way to crush someone - yikes, honestly, completely unnecessary. How about they try and create something, instead of trying to judge!" one Twitter user wrote.

"'Your's faithfully' was a nice touch. Softened the blow," another said.

It also inspired other writers to share their stories of rejection.

"I once got a rejection letter that was just word 'no' centred on the page," one wrote.

While some looked on the bright side.

"Hey at least it was a personalised rejection letter they definitely read it."


But it seems that this particular poet was not deterred by the criticism. A Frederick Charles Meyer had a book published in 1929 called Pearls of the Blue Mountains of Australia, the Blue Mountains being home to Katoomba.

And in the 1930s an FC Meyer had Jewels of Mountains and Snowlines of New Zealand published.

So it seems the harsh rebuke washed over the fledgling scribe.

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