Are you embarking on the submission phase of your writing journey? Or perhaps like me, you’ve forged head-long into the process, only to feel lost and disorientated.
You’re in the ‘The Magic Eight Ball’ zone. The inside of your mind, has been shaken to its core. Only able to answer; Yes, No or Maybe to your pointless rhetorical questions. Will you find an agent, is your work polished enough, have you spelt the agents name correctly? Blah, Blah, Blah.
I knew going into this process, that waiting and rejection was inevitable. And still I was unprepared.
As I discussed in my previous post Searching for an Agent. I’d researched the best fit agents for YA fantasy novels, fine-tuned my synopsis, pulled my big girl pants up and repeated, show no fear, you’ve got this.
I’m just five weeks in… I want to share some of my hurdles, blunders and worries I’ve faced:
- Well-meaning friends congratulating you and ask, ‘When are you going to be published?’ – Urm, I don’t know. It’s about as helpful as asking a heavily pregnant woman, when is the baby going to arrive?
- Having the best dream, where an amazing, talented agent hired you. Pulling you into a massive bear hug and promising that the world is your oyster. – Only to wake up. At least you know you’re passionate about your writing dream. Right?
- Stalking agents via Twitter, Tumbler or LinkedIn, heck maybe all three. Only to humiliate yourself with a miss understood tweet. – Hide from all forms of social media, close all the curtains and spend your life like a hermit. Yikes!
- Doubting your skills and creativity. Questioning every plot decision that has led you to this point. – It’s hard passing your precious novel over to the great unknown. As a control queen, I thrive on setting my own goals and reaching them. This part requires blind faith in your work, leaving it up to the masters of the literary universe.
I’ve already learnt from this process. By revaluating my hook and short bio, I’ve strengthened my chance at making a good first impression. There are some fantastic bloggers out there who have helped me develop those skills.
An important part of the process is acknowledgement. It’s easy to let it corrode your self-esteem. You’re not alone in these worries; every writer has struggled with them. Embrace those fears. The whole experience is tinged with What If’s. Use that momentum to evaluate where you’re going and what you plan to do next.
I’ve come to realise that this process, as painful as it can be, is also liberating and exciting. Even if I don’t find the agent of my dreams, I’m not quitting. I can’t. What a huge eye opener. In fact, I’m already 20% into my first draft of book 2 and loving every minute. There’s a sense of satisfaction, in knowing my craft. In the continuous growth of mastering a skill.
I’m still going to keep on writing, dreaming and plotting my way to the end.
I hope this blog gives a little bit of hope to anyone embarking on or wading through the query trenches. I love your advice and moral boosting comments, so don’t be shy.
Thanks for reading.
© Lorraine Ambers & http://www.lorraineambers.com 2017