Friday, April 9, 2010

The Long and Endless Wait

Are you like me, on submission?

I'm past the excitement stage of being on submission. Don't get me wrong; deep down, I'm ecstatic that several editors have three of my manuscripts - well, two fulls and one partial. But it has been so long that they've been out there, that I'm losing steam.

Really, what I'm losing is confidence. Confidence in my writing ability, especially since two of the stories are a new genre for me. I know I shouldn't feel this way; just because I'm on submission does not guarantee a sale. I know this. I'm not stupid. But as my agent has said several times to me, as well as in other areas on the internet, it is hard to wait for "green" authors.

So, what do I do? Start a new story? Finish the partial that's out on submission? Yes to both, I imagine.

But I can't seem to find my writing mojo. Probably not a good thing to put out there in the public since I am on submission. So, if you're an editor who has any one of the three manuscripts, thank you for stopping by, but there's nothing here for you to read. Carry on with your day/night.

For you writers, who like me are in the endless waiting game, can you give me some help?

What do you do when you feel like you're losing your writing confidence? What helps?

I'd love to hear your comments.


Lisa Gail Green said...

I'm in the same boat. Been two months now and intellectually I know that's not unreasonable at all, but five editors have two of my manuscripts and I feel like my life hangs in the balance. Too dramatic? That's why I write YA. :)
Find your mojo. Force it. My agent helped by telling me (in so many words) to put myself out there and do something new, challenging, exciting! I am and it's great - flying through a rough draft because I love it!

SG Redling said...

Is it wrong to feel better that I'm not alone? My dear mss has gotten the most glowing rejections. At first it helped, now I'm thinking "really?" Another series goes out today. I'm almost afraid to wait. A brave post, Kris.

Unknown said...

Thanks, Lisa. We are not alone in this. Others are experiencing this as well. I'm past feeling all of those emotions - that trepidation of the phone ringing, the pop of the email from my agent. Have I grown jaded? No. Just my way of dealing with something I have no control over. I need to remember that more often!

Unknown said...


I'm not brave - just whiny! It certainly wasn't meant to be that way, but more like a plea to the universe to get something back. Even if it is, God-forbid, a rejection.

I feel like I'm floating out there in an endless editorial pond.

Mary said...

This business needs a thick skin. And the waiting is the worst. But just remember we have Super Agent in our corner and she's doing everything to find the right home--not just any home--for our babies.

Good luck, and get the mojo working for you!

Gin said...

My Paranormal MS has been out for over six months and not a word. Trust me when I say that I feel your pain. I really let it get me down for a while. I kept running through story ideas, looking for something that would stick and make me feel confident in my writing abilities.

Nothing in my usual genre. I ran a YA idea by my agent, though, and she told me to go for it. I'm still in the editing stage, (as you know, Kris. lol) but I feel really good about the changes I made.

BUT, I still feel like I'm lacking the mojo, even though I'm still writing. After editing the YA, I'm going to go back to the other YA I'm working on and an erotic. Do I think I'm writing them well? Not really, but I'm going to keep plugging away anyway.

Why? Because I know I'm psyching myself out. I have awesome ideas even when the execution sucks. Like with the YA, my pacing was horribly off. The MS was in first draft stage and when a window opened for it, we rushed through edits to get it out. Now that I'm reading and editing it again, I'm a bit embarrassed. I wouldn't have sent it out in this condition if I'd had my head on right.

Bombing out like that...putting something I didn't fully edit on someone's desk, made me second-guess myself AGAIN.

All "green" writers do. But over the last couple years, I've heard some great advice that I try to chant in my head when I feel like I'm forcing every word on the page and I don't know why.

-You can't sell a book you haven't written.

-The more books you have for sale, the better your chances to make one.

-"My father never got plumber's block" [so I go to work at my job every day].

There are many others, but those are the ones I think of most often and I think I've babble enough. ::grins::


Unknown said...

Mary, You are right about our agent. She can work wonders.

Unknown said...

Oh Gin, a girl after my own heart. We are two peas in a pod. I love your mantras, especially the plumber's block. It's just nice to know that I'm not the only one who feels this way.

Thanks for sharing!

Susan Solomon said...

Two years for mine! And I'm nowhere near the "big call" as far as I can tell.

But I stick to my schedule of 1,000 words a day, good or bad. It keeps the "/writer" in my self-identification as worker-bee/teacher/mom/writer.

Good luck to you all!!! Hope you get "the call" very soon.

Unknown said...

Susan, I have nothing to complain about. Two years?! My heart goes out to you.

Here's hoping that we all find out sooner than later! Thanks for your comments.

Wolfgang A. Mozart said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Wolfgang A. Mozart said...

Thanks for the blog, Kris, and all the comments, everyone. I find our common frustration comforting. At the risk of sounding Pollyana-ish, I'll just say that when I'm feeling frustrated and rejected I try to remind myself that I'm supposed to be enjoying the process and not worrying about the outcome.

And sometimes it helps to just take a break and play the piano.

Keep on keeping on.

Manhattan Mary

Unknown said...

Thanks, MM! I'm feeling great today - maybe it's the afterglow of the yoga workout, or the tulips in full bloom. I'm ready to move on and get going!

Michelle Madow said...

Mine's been out for five months, but I keep saying myself that every day I don't get a "no" is one more day I can get a yes :)

And since what happens at the publishing houses is out of our control, I try to not think about them reading my completed manuscript and instead focus all of my energy on my work in progress! <3