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I’m getting sick of it. SICK. OF. IT.

Sick of others perceived success and sick of my comparative lack there of. Not in general, mind you. I’m succeeding at a lot of awesome shit right now to be honest. Just not the one thing I’ve really been wanting. And by success I mean I have no sight of the end game yet. I’m frustrated at the marooning on the vast and seemingly empty ocean of “Querying Agents.” It doesn’t even feel like a action sentence any more. It is just a place. “Agent Query” That’s not what I’m doing, it’s where I am.

Agent Query…Agent Quarry: where manuscripts are sent to be crushed by falling rock while statuesque stories carved and carried go up while my work falls down, down, and down some more.

I’ve been doing this for years and I’ve become am becoming a better writer. I may be doing this for years more before I get that one result I’m reaching for.

“Hello, yes, I like this, this thing you’ve done, give me more of it so I can help you share it with the world.”

Being sick of a situation is like any other type of sickness. It makes you feel tired. I am tired to the point of feeling done with it. It makes me even more angry because everything else seems to be going so well around it. Am I doing something wrong here…or are all the other things about to collapse as well?

I used to wake up and be able to query 10 agents over breakfast and each and every one of those little queries would leave my inbox like a little bird. Brilliant and beautiful and hopeful. “Goodbye, little friend, I hope to see you again soon!” said my eager writers heart to all of them in turn.

“I’m sorry, but you are not what we are looking for right now.” – I’ve read it so many times in so many ways that getting it now is like seeing those little baby bird bones sent back in shoe box. “Oops, was this yours? Here, it didn’t measure up, but you can have what’s left back.”

The last few weeks of querying isn’t fun anymore. There isn’t any eagerness in it. It feels more like flinging rocks into water and hoping one will float. I click send and instead of hopeful, happy goodbye it’s, “Just so it’s out of the way ahead of time, f$%k you too, you slayer of small, but potent dreams.”

Now, I understand the irony here, because these is how all my villains are born. We all want to be the good guy, and my frustration, and sick-of-it-ness makes me feel not like that. I’m the opposite of that right before evil sets in and I have to go become a serial killer of budding authors.

It’s a sign that I’m never really as in control of my temper as I like to think I am, and yes, I feel small for feeling all of these things at all. Maybe I have too many balls in the air right now to devote the time to this. Can I spend hours being a mother, a wife, a teacher, an artist, a writer, a musician, AND then find more to be all the researcher, hunter, agent-blog-devotee that it takes to actually get this thing in stone?

I don’t have an answer to that. So I am writing some more.

 

 

 

 

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3 Comments

  1. By the way, I’ve never had agents tell me that it’s too cliche, to shallow, etc. Those are my thoughts and fears. Mostly I’ve only gotten form rejections, which suck because I don’t know WHY they’re not interested. I know they’re busy, but, man, feedback would be nice. Have you gotten any feedback as to why they’re declining? I wish I would get some. Otherwise, I’m left to my own devices trying to figure it out, and I can pick at EVERYTHING.

    • No, and I don’t expect any. Just browsing through the numbers that agents have to deal with it’s just ridiculous. What’s really bad is the ones that don’t even bother to respond. Most don’t even send the Dear John letter honestly. Most of the time EVERYTHING is what’s wrong, or nothing. There are how many thousands of agents? and only one of my book. and it still might not be good enough. The odds aren’t good. But I can’t imagine stopping. Ranting, crying, whining, shouting, steaming – yes. Stopping? Nope.

  2. I’m not nearly as far into this as you are, but I have an idea of what this must feel like. The Warrior has only gotten 4 rejections so far, and already I’ve been questioning it to no end. I used to have so much faith in the story, back when it was a mess, but after I cleaned it up and started sending it out… I feel foolish with every rejection that rolls in. It’s too cliche, too shallow, the beginning is lame, no one’s interested in YA fantasy unless it’s flippin’ URBAN fantasy, blah, blah, blah :/

    I’ve heard other authors talk about the process enough. I know that everyone gets rejections, and if you keep track of the numbers then you get future bragging rights. “I was rejected blank-hundred-million times before I got my agent!” and somehow this turns into a positive thing. You were tough, you stuck with it, now you’re a success. You could wallpaper a house will all those rejections. How cool.

    Only it doesn’t feel cool right now. Not by a long shot.

    I heard an agent on Twitter say this : Sometimes, wish I could tell an author: You have talent. But this feels like the book before the 1 you get published. #NobodyWantstoHearThat

    And I thought, is that me? Should I be moving on? And I’ve only queried 6 agents so far! Gah!

    Keep at it, BJ. It only takes one person to say ‘yes’.


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