Perspectives

Attribution: Antonio Borrillo

Attribution: Antonio Borrillo

This morning I received an e-mail from the London literary agency who’d requested that exclusive for EFFIN’ ALBERT. The 30-day mark had come and gone, without word. Finally, yesterday morning, I bit the bullet and sent a brief e-mail to the agency, asking about the status. Since then, I’ve been on pins and needles, trying to steel myself against the inevitable rejection I knew was coming, even as I clung desperately to a tiny seed of hope.

This morning, I had my answer. They’d read the manuscript “with interest,” but it “wasn’t right for our list.” I can’t–

I can’t be devastated, no way, not in light of that awful plane crash in the French Alps the other day. To suggest that I’m devastated, when families right now are facing the worst nightmare possibly imaginable, would be absolutely abhorrent on my part. There is no comparison between receiving a manuscript rejection and receiving news that your loved ones just–

No, not devastated. Not even close. I’ll stick with ‘disappointed.’

When you write a novel and try to get it published, disappointment is part of the package. Hope and rejection seem ladled out arbitrarily; often, unequally; sometimes, unfairly. It’s a fickle business–I’ve said that before–and not for the faint of heart. *sigh* So, disappointed. And sad. And ashamed, which surprises me and which I hesitate to admit. But the truth is, I do feel shame right now. I failed to get an offer, ergo, I’m a failure and now everybody knows it.

IF I post this thing.

I will post this thing. My little tag line for this blog is, on writing and figuring it all out, yeah. That’s what I’m doing and this, right here, is part of the process. I have to figure out what’s next for me. Do I dwell, or do I get proactive, start sending out queries again? Or should I hang it up, succumb to the idea that maybe my stuff isn’t commercial enough, isn’t good enough?

I already know my answer. I’m going to keep trying. Each of us, all of us, will find ourselves at a crossroads at some point in our lives. A choice will loom and the decision we make will influence the rest of our lives, for better or for worse. That decision is ours alone to make–a solitary endeavor, but we all share the reality of that and in that regard, we’re all in the same boat, tossed on a tumultuous sea, seeking safe harbor and welcoming arms. Sometimes, that’s all we want. Sometimes, we want more than that. We may want something so badly we can taste it but nothing’s guaranteed. So we have to do what’s best, each one of us, for our own selves.

For me, that means reveling in my misery a little while longer, lamenting today’s perceived failure. I’ll indulge, and then I’ll count my blessings. I get a second chance. I can always try again tomorrow.

Some folks aren’t that lucky.

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8 thoughts on “Perspectives

  1. Hey kk,

    I’m really sorry to hear about the R. *big hugs* You can absolutely feel awful. You should be able to feel whatever the hell you need to feel. I’ve been in that boat, and I know how much it fucking sucks. The plane crash is terrible, but we all feel what we feel and there’s no helping that.

    Having said that, one day your books will be on the shelves. I know it, kk. *HUUUUUGS*

    • cowomnon, what a kind thing to say.

      The more I’m in this writing business, the more I realize how much of a mind game it is. I mean, in a writer’s own head. Good news/not so good news, and a certain word starts reverberating in my cranium:

      Recalculating. Recalculating.

      Yeah. Just like on a Garmin: Can’t get where you want to go? Try another path. Agent A rejects your submission? Try Agents B, C, D, X. Try publishers. Self-publish. Keep recalculating until you find a way, but you have to believe in your product, and you have to believe your product is worth the effort. That’s something only you can decide because, ultimately, you’ll be doing that work. You’ll be the one dusting yourself off and trying again, and again, and again, and–

      Yeah. I can personally add another 100+ ‘agains’ to that. Anyhoo, the hugs are appreciated, as is your support, cowomnon. Thank you.

      xo kk

  2. Get back on that horse and send it out again! That’s what I try to do anyway. Or, let it stew a bit and re-read, see what nips and tucks are appropriate.

    Disappointed is all right. Desultory even. Perspective is important, you’re right.

    • Exactly, Jen. I’m gonna do that, starting tomorrow if the stars align just so. And even if they don’t, I know I’ll be working that ALBERT query because I need to get those boys some air time. 🙂

      So they didn’t want to rep me. Worse things have happened. In the scheme of Life, that’s diddly. I shall endeavor to keep my head in that place–the place of professionalism, tenacity, and logic–and not in that other, wanky place where writers fall on their swords, swooning and sweating and lamenting “POOR ME! POOR ME!”

      Nobody likes those guys.

      🙂

      Thank you, Jen. ❤ right back.

      -kk

      • I mean, we all need to engage in some “POOR ME” once in awhile, but it’s best done privately and in one’s thoughts. It’s a hard genie to put back in the bottle once it’s let out. 😉

        • I know. Lord have mercy, do I ever.

          Your genie analogy reminds me of something David Brandt (CHERRY) wrote in his journal, “I spilled it, spilled everything, and once that cat was out of the bag, there was no cramming it back in there. ”

          Truer woids, Mr. Brandt.

          🙂

          • Pretty deep, Mr. B!

            (are you still subbing Cherry now too? Have you started a new book yet? Have you already answered these questions and I’m a bad friend and forgot? 🙂 )

            • No worries, Jen. CHERRY was deeply revised, the result of that R&R. It’s in the hands of a beta now, when I get the green light I’ll be sending it off to two Indie publishers who’ve given me the opportunity to do that.

              New bewk? Not officially, but I had to set my latest, DIARY OF A SOULLESS BOY, aside for this CHERRY and ALBERT stuff. So I have a lot on my plate, I won’t be bored.

              🙂

              xoxo kk

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