Wednesday, October 31, 2007

First Rejection

So I received my first rejection today, which is faster than I thought it would be, seeing that I sent the query yesterday. But I am happy about the fast turn around. One less to worry about.

Surprisingly, it didn't sting as much as I thought it would. Granted, of the five agents I've queried so far, I was sure this one was the least likely. I think some of the others may hurt more than this one. And when I've gotten all rejections back, I'm sure I'll feel some amount of despair. For now, I'm holding up just fine.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Initial Shock Wears Off

After the initial shock of submitting my first query, I went ahead and submitted 4 more today! My goal is at least 10 submitted queries. I have emailed the first five, but now I will have to mail the rest. So the rest of this week I will be personalizing letters and then send them out on Friday or Monday.

Monday, October 29, 2007

The Dream Realized

Today I sent out my first agent query letter. Wow, I was shaking just pressing the send button. Even after spending nearly two years writing and editing this book of mine, I still have a hard time believing any of it happened. There was a time I thought I would never write a book, even though is has been one of my greatest dreams since I was young.

I can remember being a young child, writing my little book Oh Brother! The words are so simple, looking back at it, but I remember how funny I thought it was. My own little drawings I thought were masterpieces, now they are cute scribbles. I remember being frustrated that I couldn't do it better, that I didn't have more time, that I was only a little kid and my words didn't come out just the way I wanted.

As I got older I wrote and wrote. I still remember learning the essay for the first time–I'm sure I am one of very few that was in love with the whole concept. I would get a pad of paper and pick a topic and write my essay. For fun! In junior high I got up the courage to write some books that I had ideas about. I let my friends read them and they begged for more, but I never finished any of those stories. I got scared. I told myself I shouldn't get my hopes up for being a writer, but still the thought lingered over years. So I settled on expository writing and persuasive writing, instead of my creative writing beginnings. It was here that I could get a job; make a living; all that jazz.

But now I'm here, sending in a much bigger creative book as a much bigger kid. And still I feel the way I did then–completely in love with writing and all its dips and curves, and terrified that this is what I want. I have wanted to give up so many times, and I have ignored this dream for a long time, believing that there was no way I could ever do something so grand as publish. Well, maybe I won't ever get published, but somewhere between that 5-year-old kid and the 23-year-old me I've finally got up the gumption to give it a try no matter how hard I fall. So now when I'm eighty and still dreaming away, I can at least say I gave it a good honest try, and I know that will give me some amount of peace.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Getting There

So I'm really starting to get there with my query and synopsis now. I can't believe it, but I am loving my query right now. I think it's miles better than it was last week. I really shaved it down and it sounds good and says what it needs to say.

The synopsis is coming along (down to 3.3 pages!), but I still don't think I'll be sending out my things this Friday as planned. My editor friend, Joey, said he would read it one more time over the weekend and I really want that extra opinion and grammar check before I send it out.

Therefore, next week is definitely the week! Very behind my planned date of send-out, but I'm actually doing it and that's what matters, right? Maybe that will give me time to figure out a few more agents I would like to query. I have a top two now, but three would be cool, and ten would be even cooler. I get butterflies just thinking about the inevitable rejection, lol.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

This is Hard

Wow, so in researching agents I've found that this whole publishing business is scary. I keep reading all these things people expect of my query and synopsis and I want to hide under a bottle cap and have a good cry.

I am such a perfectionist, and since these people clearly expect perfection, or at least very close, I feel like I'm never going to make it. I look at my query and just say, "Well, crap." And then my synopsis, they want a 2-3 pager, mine is finally down to five. Now I still have to cut a lot. I often wonder why the heck I keep going, but here I am cutting the crap out of my once obese, now slightly overweight synopsis.

If I can get my synopsis short enough and pretty enough, if I can make my query sound respectable, then I plan to send this out to my first agent this week. I have had her in mind for nearly two months now, and I am excited, but terrified she will turn me down because she is by far my favorite agent I've read about. If she doesn't want it, I'll have to figure out who to send it to next, which is very up in the air right now.

Why am I doing this again?

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Query Query Query

With the synopsis comes the ever daunting query as well. I have one written, but I am not pleased with it at all. I can't seem to write concise enough to explain my story in about two paragraphs, ideally one. And it's really more than explaining it; I have to sell it, make it sound like the most awesome idea out there. Sigh, I swear I'm not giving up on this!

As intimidating as sharing my whole book in a paragraph is, I also have to share about myself. Now if I were already an established writer with books and articles to show off, this may not be so overwhelming. But as a first-time author and a young stay-at-home mom, I feel like my life is so little and short.

I am working on cleaning up this career-changing query today. Wish me luck!

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

My Adventure

Writing has always been my first love. Since I was little I wanted to write stories and dreamed of a day when I would be a published writer. For a long time I was afraid that I would never realize my hopes, but now I have finished revising my first book and plan to start the journey into the publishing world.

This blog will chronicle my struggles and successes as an amateur writer wading through the big realm of book publishing. As scared as I am to set out, I am excited to venture out and see if I have any luck.