Tuesday, November 27, 2007

There's Always Next Week . . .

What's my bugaboo?


Recently I joined a yahoo group that helps writers reach their weekly goals. My goals consisted of:
writing a few chapters in my latest wip
critiquing for my group
editing my last wip
submitting to at least two agents
entering a contest
sticking to a food plan.

Easy, right?

As the first week went by, I checked off my goals. Writing and entering contest - check. Critiquing, editing, reading- check. Sticking to a food plan and exercise - somewhat check, but not too bad. Submitting to agents - no, but I did get a lot done. No biggie, there's always next week.

Week two, I met all my goals again, with the exception of one. Yup, you guessed it. I didn't submit to any agents. No biggie, there's always next week.

I've been saying that since June.

I can't blame my lack of submitting on my inability to write a good query. I have a query that has gotten me quite a few requests. I've had my first three chapters critiqued to perfection, thank you very much.

So why aren't I submitting?

Maybe I'm lazy. I've submitted to agents via e-mail, no problem. That's easy. Just click a few buttons and you're done. A lot of agents don't accept E-queries, so I'd have to print out the required materials, put them in envelopes, take them to the post office, pay some crazy amount to mail them all and then treat myself to a cafe mocha at Starbucks.

No that can't be it. I go to the post office all the time and I'm not afraid to spend money to further my career. Plus, any excuse for a mocha and I'm there.

Maybe it's fear of failure. Hmm, I might have something here. After sending out all those e-queries, I received some pretty fast form letter rejections. A few, "send me some pages" that eventually produced some personal rejections and one still out since May.

Maybe, but I doubt it. Rejections bother me, but they don't devastate me, especially when I get a personal rejection. It's all par for the course. I have faith in my story and my writing. I know eventually someone will feel the same way.

So why haven't I submitted to agents? I have no idea, but eventually I'm going to run out of "next weeks".


  1. Woman, send me your query letter and your home address, and I'll have a letter in the mail to at least 10 appropriate agents by Friday! :) In return you can put me on your dedicate page when you get pubbed.

    Jody W.

  2. Call me crazy but I have the problem in reverse. I have the fear of success. I have the fear that I WILL sell and then my life will never be the same. Right now, I write for me. What will happen when I have an editor breathing down my neck? How will I handle deadline pressure, revision hell, having to write when my muse won't cooperate, losing the pleasure of writing because it's become a job, a chore? Maybe that's why I've stalled so long with finishing this WIP and sending it to my agent. I'm afraid of what's waiting on the other side of the publishing fence if I succeed. Yes, I am nuts.

  3. My God! Lori is my twin!!!

    Though I have submitted and been rejected.Yeah! PRO status! I still have fears similiar to Lori's list. I don't think we are nuts. We are human and pretty much hate the unknown, have exceedingly high expectations for ourselves and aren't real good with self-forgiveness or change. Okay, maybe that is not Lori, but it is DEFINITELY me.

    What pushes me through those fears is that publication is an achievement that NO ONE else my family has claimed and one that embraced after almost meeting my Maker prematurely.

    I also work better WITH a Deadline and since I get little to no cooperation with housework, I just assume that any advance I get will go to a cleaning service.



  4. Maybe doing it in small pieces is the problem? Just do them in big chunks and rip off the band-aid all at once. Then you won't have to worry about it, and you'll always have something in the pipeline. A thought, anyway. Lori and Talia, I know EXACTLY what you mean...turns out that, while getting published does change things, you also end up redefining "success." There's always something more exciting/scarier on the horizon!