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Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Heart

Well, Nightmare on Query Street is over – for me at least.  It was a fun few days but ultimately the judges didn’t find what they were looking for in my manuscript.  I won’t lie and say there weren’t tears or there wasn’t a brief moment of “why do I bother”.  I’ve been asked to not stray too far away from the twitter feed even though I am no longer in the running (and maybe never really was).  Apparently, my contributions to the feed have been worthwhile but I’m still undecided on that.  I don’t want to come off as sour grapes but the stab of rejection is a little too fresh for me to wade back in to watch the celebrating.

Now it’s back to the query trenches with the hope that someone, somewhere will see something in my little manuscript that could.  I still believe in the piece even if I’m having trouble finding people who feel the same way.  And, it’s not just because I’m the author and I think everything I write is amazing.  Is it a perfect manuscript?  Probably not but wasn’t it Picasso who said art is never finished but rather abandoned?  I’m sure some tweaks need to be made but as a whole I think I have something good and people who have actually read it agree.

I want to thank the good folks who were chatting with me last night and talked me off my proverbial ledge.  Those first few moments after the announcement was made weren’t pretty ones for me.  It’s always my endeavor to never come off as whiny or anything and if I ever came close to it last night I apologize.

I didn't write this because I wanted anyone to feel sorry for me or that I feel sorry for myself.  My goal with this blog is to chronicle the ups and downs of this process.  It's easy to say "don't take it personal" or "don't let it get you down".  But, we're all humans with emotions and not having feelings just isn't in the cards.  Having those moments of reflection, sadness, and even doubt are okay.  They're even healthy.  But, the goal is not to dwell on those moments.  To take stock and move forward carrying something better than what you had before.

I would also like to thank the hard working folks behind #NoQS.  All of you have jobs, families, and your own books but you still made the time to try to help people reach their ultimate goals and find an agent/publisher.  This road doesn’t end here for you guys and it stretches on for you and the writers you saw potential in.  May you all find success in your future endeavors.

Finally, congratulations to the winners – may you all come out of this adventure with agents, books deals, and gads of fans.


Sunday, October 12, 2014

Shades of Gray



And the rejections came pouring in from every side.  While I do try to stay positive and not let the naysayers pull me down I'm also not going to put a fake whitewash on things.  Getting rejections just plain old sucks - even really nice, non-form rejections have some level of suckage.  We all question ourselves from time to time.  Are we wasting our time?  Are we wasting everyone else's time?  What if we're not good enough? 

Those questions are perfectly acceptable but the important thing is to not get trapped in those moments.  If someone comes along and says you're not supposed to feel down about the query process you have my permission to kick them in the shin.  You have every right to feel down about things but it's important to move on.  Reflection is okay but don't peruse them. 

There are a lot of cooks in my kitchen and I have trouble sorting out what advice to take and what is best left to the side.  Everyone means well but with so many opposing views coming at me I end up feeling as if I'm on an out of control merry-go-round.  The up and down and round and round can give anybody a headache.  I'm sure anyone else out in Agent Land can understand those feelings - many of you have probably had them.

I've been prepping for Nightmare on Query Street lately and I feel like I'm just about where I want to be.  I just need to tighten up my query just a bit more before the deadline.  A lot of these contests have the same judges/mentors/agents as other contests and sometimes I have to wonder if they're tired of seeing my name and title go scrolling by.  "Her again?"  But, perseverance pays off and this is more of a "keeping at it" game than anything else.  If we all gave up after thirty-two rejections there wouldn't be a publishing business to speak of.  No new books would ever get published.

So, we'll all keep plugging away until that shining moment when someone wants to read more that becomes an offer of rep.  Remember, many authors got hundreds of rejections and only one yes.