Tag Archives: publishing

Sunny side – down?

Yesterday I received a response from an agent the very same day I sent the query. Wow, what a first! It sounds a little crazy, but despite the fact that it was a rejection, it’s a huge relief to be able to move on in search of another agent.

I must admit, I had thought this agent would have been perfect for me. She handles both mid-grade and YA (I’m having difficulties determining which category my story falls into, perhaps more on that later) and even mentions specific interest in other-world stories.

I feel as if my query is very well written. So I am definitely in that phase where I feel as if the story sucks. It has to suck. Why won’t anyone at least read the manuscript? Oh, because the manuscript probably sucks too.

I had a lot of faith in this project and it’s very difficult to not lose that. But to be honest, I haven’t had that many rejections. I haven’t even sent it to ten agents yet. So… buck up, hey?

If you’re not sure how to feel after reading this post, it’s because neither do I! Ha!

P.S. I entered a contest to win scholarship for the Backspace Writers Conference in New York. Winning is based upon votes, which will open March 5th. You can see my entry now; just look for Entry 20!

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Nerves and doing it wrong

After experiencing the most minimal of minimal fender-benders yesterday, I found myself incredibly nervous driving to work today. The solution? To ditch my friends tonight (sorry Leanne!) and hole up in my home, under a dark blanket, away from cars, with the last few chapters of my manuscript to finish line-editing.

I’m down to those last few days. Those last moments before I finally have a polished ‘script, for the first time in my life. Before I finally get to start querying for a (gasp!omg!) agent. How does it feel?

It feels unreal. It feels like I’ve been stretching out these last few weeks, procrastinating the first (second? third?) big hurdle in getting this darn book published. It feels like I’ve forgotten everything I’ve read and learned in the past few years about query writing and the publishing industry.

It’s hard for me to do things wrong. I’m one of those crazy people who inexplicably would rather give up than fail (though in my old age, I’m starting to realize that the former is the same as the latter). I’m not any sort of perfectionist, but I hate disappointing people, disappointing myself.

So what happens now? What happens when I finally sit down and finish the last of my edits and start querying and just… flop? Go no further? Find out these last 2.5 years have been for naught?

*Deep breaths* I guess we’ll find out. In the meantime, I’m just going to keep delving in blogs and articles and everything else I can find about writing.

Like this New Yorker article, about how writing is hard.

Or this scary Janet Reid blog post, about building platform before you even find an agent… um, eep?


Flows like blood

Every time I’m browsing my favourite industry blogs for inspiration or tips or mostly information, I get stuck on this one poignant post from The Intern.

The concept of replacing what is lost is not a new one to me. I’ve misplaced/deleted/lost plenty of passages before, sometimes full chapters. There was one time in which I wrote a section of one of my novels twice, without realizing it, and compared them side-by-side to find them equally dynamic yet completely different.

But The Intern’s post definitely helps keep things in perspective. If you truly are a writer, than writing/replacing/recreating words is as natural as life-blood. It’ll flow, when the time is right, and there are far worse things than honing your skill by starting something new or touching on the same sections more than once.


It totally takes time!

I just read a great blog post by literary agent Janet Reid on how good writing takes time and really wanted to share it.

She speaks about how some of the best writers took years and years to write their famous works. Some of her examples, like T.S. Elliot, surprised me. Others did not – it should take a large chunk of time to write an extremely long and arduous piece. Did you know that Tolkien took twelve years to write the Lord of the Rings trilogy? I used to think that was a long time, but when you factor in that he created an entire world and developed several full languages… it’s not so hard to believe.

In my neck of the woods, YA fiction, I believe that it takes John Green about two years or more to write a book.

The fact that good writing takes a long time is a interesting point-of-view, as other esteemed novelists, such as Stephen King, insist that to be a good author you must write something like 2,000 words a day.

I’m okay floating in the good-writing-takes-time boat – at the beginning of April, it will be two years I have been working on my novel! Eep! I’m looking forward to finally having something to show for all of my hard work and the hundreds and hundreds of hours. Something to show the people who said, “Well, you don’t have to write.” Maybe I don’t get paid for this job, but it is a job. And yes, I do have to do it!

Being a traditionally published author has been a dream of mine for as long as I can remember. What’s yours?