now we wait

First off I want to start off by saying: “BWHAHAHAHA!! I blogged again this month.” Okay, I’m done. Next off I want to share that I’ve submitted 8 times in the past week and half to agents and publishers (one by snail mail). I am no longer lazy or procrastinating… or chicken. I’ve been hitting “send” on e-mails like I hit “purchase” on Amazon. No problem, NEXT!

Now what has been time consuming is getting stuff ready for different publishers and agents. I had a query letter all prepared for agent submissions, and suddenly, they all want cover letters. I had a one page synopsis ready, and they want a one paragraph synopsis… or one that is three to ten pages. They want pasted manuscripts with 1.5 spacing, they want attachments in Courier. They want my query letter to answer their particular questions. Why it’s almost like they want met to tailor my submissions to meet their requirements!–hah, I’m kidding. I just never thought it would take days to get each submission of the same material ready for send-off.

I’ve learned to take my time and to read all directions at least three times. Some agents are vaguer than others and leave a lot to creative interpretation, while some tell you to the letter what they want and what they don’t. It would really stink to get rejected due to improper format. I’d kick myself.

Oh, and tell me why, 200 reads later, I’m still finding typos in the manuscript. Even after other people have read and edited, new typos just pop up. I think a little troll comes in the night and deletes single words like “to” from every 14th sentence on every 15th page. Well, maybe not quite that often, but still. Every time I see where a word is missing from a sentence, I think: When did this happen? Has it never been there? Did I accidentally delete it while editing something else? It’s irritating, but then you think, if me and like fifteen other people missed this, then it’s very likely to be missed by fifteen more people. Hopefully whoever reads my manuscript won’t notice them.

So… now I’m playing the “Waiting Game”. The one where you want to check your e-mail every five seconds, though the agents and publishers say: Give me 6-8 weeks or longer. One says: six months. But it still doesn’t stop you from looking. You get all giddy thinking what if someone got my e-mail, opened it right away because your name sounds cool, read your stuff immediately because you’re awesome, loved it, and can’t wait to contact you. Whoo hoo! (And yeah, right.) If anything, when an agent responds within a day it’s usually an auto-reject. I know; I’ve gotten them before, lol.

Here’s the process I’ve decided on to keep me from going nuts. Since submissions take so long and I get so antsy waiting, instead of doing submissions every week, I’ll do them every other. I’ll submit 2-5 times a week, then take a week off to write new material and hopefully distract myself with what I love to do: write. I’ll still check my e-mail a lot, but I’ll have other deadlines to meet as well. We’ll see how it goes. ūüôā

Okay, random change of subject. I want to talk about this creepy book I’m reading. I run a teen book club for the library I work at. The kids voted to read The Diviners by Libba Bray. I’m listening to the audio book of it, because I had a free audible credit. So, I’m chilling, listening, enjoying it… then things in the book get weird and I flashback to being a little kid looking at Freddy Krueger. The narrator, January LaVoy, is awesome. This is officially one book I don’t want to listen to before trying to go to sleep at night because I’ll end up lying in bed seeing shadows and hearing noises. (It doesn’t help that my water heater makes noises like someone trying to knock the house down with a sledgehammer in the middle of the night for no reason.) ¬†Anyways, I haven’t finished the book yet, but so far so good.

To sum up this post: I’m all over the place, but doing what I’m supposed to do. I’m submitting, I’m going to be writing new stuff soon, and I’m keeping organized (somewhat). I’m anxious to hear some feedback, always ready to hear positive things, but hey if I don’t, there are many other agents and publishers out there that I’ve yet to try!

I will blog again soon, I hope. And maybe I’ll have some news :).

i'm not dead pink

I can start this entry off with more promises of blogging more frequently, but I know I’m lying. I love the idea of having a blog, I love the way it looks, and sometimes, great things happen and I want to blog. I just don’t. It’s like lying on the couch with a bag of snacks staring at your treadmill, thinking: I want to use that thing. But do you? Nah. Requires you to stop doing nothing and be productive, lol. We can’t have that, can we?

Ironic that this post is actually about how productive I’ve been these past few months :). Here are some accomplishments:
1. Had my annual review at work– Got a gold star.
2. My novel was 127,000 words– edited it down to 99,000 words.
3. Started my own weekly writers group through Meet-up– It’s been 6 months and still going strong, and sometimes is Wait-list only.
4. Went to the San Francisco Writers Conference 2015 and rubbed elbows with agents– Four out of five agents said send me that novel (or some of it).
5. After weeks of being a perfectionist (editing like crazy, again)– I sent my manuscript off last night (bye, bye Mommy’s baby, have a good first day of school… **sob**)

So, after Number 5, I wait for responses. I opened up my dusty, agent submission log (started in 2011 and not used since then) where I enter in the queries and manuscripts I send out to agents, looked at my long list of submissions (2 agents) and see that one of the agents I’m sending to this time around is the same agent who gave me my first rejection letter. ¬†It was a nice standard issue form letter that came within a few hours of my submission. I told myself (to make me feel better) that I must have committed a formatting treason and got an auto-reject. The agent couldn’t possibly have read my work that fast and hated it, right? ¬†Haha. Well, years later, I find out that it WAS an auto-reject! (Not that she might not have rejected it anyway, but still… HAHA, I was right!). ¬†Anyways, at the conference, when the agent gave me her card, she said: Make sure you put my super secret code in the subject line or else you’ll get an auto-reject. I don’t read unsolicited manuscripts from new authors unless I meet them at a conference. ¬†I swear I heard the “Patty Mayonnaise” music Doug heard whenever puffy-headed Patty entered the room, when I made the connection. (Oh yeah, I revealed my age right there in that comment. Nick-toons were the best in the 90s.)

So, I’ve got 10 pages in the hand of one agent, and an entire manuscript in the hands of another. ¬†I’m excited, nervous and relieved at the same time. ¬†Excited, because I’m finally submitting, for real. ¬†I’m ready for my 100 rejection letters! Nervous, because “Oh no, it’s baby’s first day at school, what if someone is mean to him or steals his lunch money?” ¬†Relieved, because I did it. ¬†The manuscript is out there. ¬†When people ask if I sent it off yet, I can say “Yes!” ¬†So, now I have to keep myself from checking my e-mail every hour, like a mama checking the nanny-cam. ¬†My logical brain knows that I’m not going to hear anything for weeks, and that if I do hear anything back this soon, it’ll be “BWHAHAHAHA, how dare you send us this crap?” ¬†But knowing all that doesn’t stop me from constantly checking. ¬†I’m even annoying myself with it.

To take my mind off of it, I could do something productive, like write something new. Hey, I could work on revising the sequel to the manuscript I sent off. ¬†That’s a great idea… or I can lie on the couch with a bag of snacks staring at my exercise machine or laptop and think: Man, I should be using that thing. ¬†Couch and snacks sound good, but nah. ¬†Been there, done that. ¬†Maybe I should research some more agents that I haven’t met and get some more submissions sent out. ¬†But my question is, should I wait to hear back from the agents I just sent to? ¬†If they don’t like the manuscript, maybe they might offer some good feedback as to why and I might get some useful edits made according to it. ¬†But then again, what if the things they hated about the book another agent loves? ¬†At times like these, I wish I had Jean Grey’s powers to not just to read a mind, but to change a mind: My baby is the cutest, smartest, most awesome baby in the world. You like him. ¬†You want him. ¬†Lol. ¬†About 50 submissions from now, I’ll be laughing at this entry. ¬†I’m such a newbie, but ah well. ¬†Gotta start sometime, and I’m way past due.

Okay, so I just wanted to get an entry in here and let WordPress know I’m not dead… “just floating”, being lazy, procrastinating, so don’t cancel my subscription–especially since you already took my money for it. I can’t promise when I’ll do another one of these. I always enjoy writing blog entries when I finally get around to doing them, it’s just the “getting around to them” part that’s so hard.

Until next time–and hey, maybe by then I’ll have some interesting news, or good news, or a new place to live, or a new man, or… ¬†Ah, whatever. ¬†Take care!

 

“I’m not dead… just floating”–Pink, I’m Not Dead.
Mann, B. and Pink. (2006). I’m Not Dead. [Recorded by Pink]. I’m Not Dead [CD]. London, England: Zomba Music Group.

Yay, I heard back from the agent I sent my full manuscript and synopsis to.¬† She took exactly one month from the day that I sent it to her.¬† She didn’t give me a standard form letter; she wrote me a nice, brief, note.¬† She said that while I am a promising new author she felt that she could not empathize with the main character enough to be able to champion her story.¬†

I take that as positive feedback.¬† She didn’t say: Yuck, this sucks.¬† Or you need to read these craft book or revise.¬† She just said: You’re good, but this isn’t my cup of tea.¬† Good luck! ¬†Lol.¬† So, now it’s time to decide who to¬†send to next.¬† I really should start sending out to more than one place at a time.¬† In fact, I think I will this time.¬† I already know one place I’ll send it to next; I’ll hit up The Writers Market for some more.¬† I’ll try to do a submission a week :D.¬†

And while I’m doing that, I will not stop writing.¬† I will keep writing my sequel, and hopefully finish it before the summer is up and move on to the last¬†book.¬†¬†I just feel like I should have so much more material than I do.¬† Once I get my apartment in order (oh, by the way, the rest¬†of my stuff got here today, WHOOO), I will be able to concentrate more on writing.¬†

Okay, I’m about to discover the joy of unpacking… again.¬† But yay to hearing back from another agent, and getting a personalized note.¬† And once again, I say:

NEXT!

 

 

Haha, so I got my first rejection e-mail.¬† Wow, you know a few years¬†ago I think I might have been choked up about it.¬† My baby was rejected, and with a form letter no less, but hey, the form letter had my name on it!¬† And they were so quick about it, too.¬† I sent it off yesterday, no joke, and got the reply today.¬† I was expecting to wait weeks for that first “No.”¬† Either the lady really hated it, or I did a major formatting “no-no.”¬†

Haha, anyway I think that was less nerve wracking than waiting for someone to call you back after a job interview.¬† Those guys can take forever to tell you “No way!”¬† This lady took 24 hours… that is, if she even read it.¬† I kinda think she didn’t because it just came back too fast.

So, now I feel accomplished.¬† I actually submitted my work to a complete stranger for scrutiny and I’m ready for more.¬† To rejection, I say: NEXT!¬†