Wednesday, November 18, 2009

90 Days, 90,000 Words of Crap

If you'd told me 90 days ago that by this point all I'd have gotten out of my query quest is two partial requests, one full request, and a boatload of rejections, I'd...well, I don't know what I'd have said to you, but I wouldn't have believed it. Not that I hadn't read some stuff indicating the process could, you know, take some time, but...well, that wasn't relevant to me, right? I mean, my book's different, you know....

I didn't feel that way because I have a huge ego. I'm wracked with insecurities. (And not just about writing.) My usual way of describing my novel to friends gushing over my "success" as a writer is to proudly aver, "Well, it may be 90,000 words of crap, but it's 90,000 words."

Here's the funny thing. I seem to have developed perspective. So this is all the farther I've gotten in 90 days? Pfftt. C'est la guerre. That full request from early September that I haven't heard a peep about? Ah, maybe I'll nudge in January. Or February. It may take another three months just to gin up one more request for a partial? Feh. It's like I've just accepted this crazy system as...normal.


  1. Yep, I hear ya. The waiting is surely the worst, the very worst. I knew it would be a wait but didn’t know the wait would be such hell. And now with the holidays around the corner, I fear everything is just going to slow down even more. UGH. Are you working on anything new? When I have a new book going it helps me forget about the queries (a little). Besides, falling in love with a new project helps take the sting out of the rejections that come in.

  2. I have two full requests from September that I haven't heard anything about. Do you ever feel like you just dreamed the request?? I do.

  3. OMG omg omg omg omg, do I understand :-)

    I've been querying for almost a year now and have well over thirty rejections to my name (way way way more, but I'll make myself feel better and settle with 30)

    So...hang in there Trav, you're not alone my friend.

  4. I'm with you, my friend. Closing in on six weeks into my own querying process and not even one darned partial request. Agents were supposed to recognize that my idea is brilliant, my writing is brilliant, *I* am brilliant (and like you, virtually no one in real life would claim that I'm full of myself)...but they haven't.

    As the time wears on, I'm beginning to shrug my shoulders and settle in for the long haul. This thing - the querying process - it's just going to have to play on in the background while I live my life.

  5. Jennifer - not really. Thinking vaguely about a sequel, but if no prequel gets published...

    K.M. - this whole process goes back and forth between reverie and nightmare.

    Dawn - control yourself, dearie!

    Lt. Cccyxx - we *are* brilliant, so WTF isn't that universally recognized in Agentville?

  6. Dawn,
    Careful with those OMGs. You're going to inflate, Trav's ego:)

    At lease you've gotten to that point. I haven't even started querying yet, and frankly, you're scaring me a bit.

  7. No need to be scared Tina. This is how it goes. Marathon, guys, marathon! Not a sprint! (Repeat until you believe it.)

    The most important thing to remember is that if you are persistent, you will get published.

    The fact that you have a full request is already validation.

  8. Tina Lynn - you set up a great joke there, but I'm going to save it for your next Blue Monday.

    Sierra - I may have "validation," but will it pay for my parking?

  9. Travener--no, it will not. Such is the business.

  10. I think it would drive me nuts too.

    I've often read the advice to just keep writing - and I can imagine that besides the tangible result of creating new material, the other important effect would be to take my mind off the interminable wait for agent feedback.

    Of course, that's all hypothetical: I should probably write something first. But that's just me.

    All the best with the queries!

  11. Travener, write your sequel, but make sure it can stand alone!!! Then, if the agent search for your first novel is a bust, start querying them with the second. When you get an agent for your second novel, you can say "and you know what? I just so happen to have a prequel to this novel that's all ready to go!"