I received a rejection letter from an agent yesterday, and it was notable for a couple of reasons.

First, it was long and detailed. Not just, “Sorry, not right for us,” but a full page of personalized feedback, both praise (“We were all particularly impressed by…”) and the opposite (“we worry… we felt they lacked… we also had some concerns…”). Good stuff, even if not quite the sort of stuff I’d been hoping for.

The second thing was — and my wife confirmed this for me — the letter smelled. It was scented. Perfumed, I tell you. Not as strong as the cologne strip in a magazine ad, but definitely noticeable.

Maybe all of this agent’s correspondence — or everything from her entire agency — carries this aroma with it. Maybe just the rejections do, to make them go down more easily. Or maybe there’s a hierarchy of smells available to them for marking their letters, and I got one of the more appealing ones.

If that’s the case, I’m just glad I didn’t submit to this agent a few revisions back…