Rejected for being too similar?

After being waiting for an answer for around 10 days, my theme has been rejected for being “too similar to other items”. I’ve been working on this theme for about 13 months with no pay, and it’s frustrating to be rejected after all this time just like this. I’ve been trying to get to themeforest for years (half a decade) and I’m honestly about to give up after all these years. My theme wasn’t designed after any other theme. I’ve followed all principles (alignment, spacing, hierarchy). I’m a Wordpress developer and a codecanyon author.

Can you tell me what’s too similar about it?

This is the demo URL.

Not sure about it being too similar but it does feel very unfinished…

  • None of the links in the footer go anywhere/do anything

  • 3 post types is a good start but these are just layouts - it could be useful to offer different media format post types

  • There’s very limited layouts generally (at least on show), and show demo a multitude of options

  • Search widget is vey narrow/small, as is the off canvas side bar very empty

  • is the subscription widget only via MailChimp?

  • can’t close popup on mobile

  • avoidable validation issues

1 Like

Hi, Charlie. Thanks for taking the time to check out my theme.

We were planing to add more single post layouts, in fact, we already have a few wireframes and some include post formats.

The theme includes 16 built-in Elementor blocks. The off canvas panel is actually a fully widgetized area!

All other points you mention are minor details that can easily be fixed/or improved. Do you think it deserves a full hard reject? Do you think it’s really too bad enough to discard these 13 months of work? Im clueless as to what to do next because I believe it has a solid foundation but I don’t know what’s too similar about this theme in comparison to other blog/magazine themes. I’m willing to change it as much as needed but I don’t know what’s wrong to begin with.

Spend some time checking out some popular themes in the same category, maybe you will find out you’ve unintentionally created something similar to an existing item.
Take a break for few days and come back to it with a set of fresh eyes and try to improve the design further. It looks solid but there is always room for improvement.