Thursday, December 15, 2011

I Check My Email a Million Times a Day.

Elana Johnson wrote a book on writing queries, and the final section is about waiting. Waiting. WAITING! Which is what I'm doing. Which is why I check my email at all hours. (Because some agent just might be up at two a.m. reading my excerpt and loving it--not because it's so late, but because it's so good ...) Right now I have a manuscript submitted to a publisher, and it's one of those cases where it might be six months before I hear from them. I have two thoughts on the issue-

*HOW THE HECK CAN THEY TURN IT DOWN? It's simply amazing. They'll all love it. I'm finally going to get published. I'm wondering what two weeks I should have my husband take off this summer so I can travel for book signings. And should I contact "Live with Kelly" now and offer them the first chance to interview me?

* ... I. Am. Never. Getting. Published.

Which makes checking my email a bit nerve racking. Once, after a small publisher asked me to revise a different novel and resubmit it, my husband was checking my email for something and saw a response from them. He happened to be on the phone with me because I was at the lumber store. 
"Hey, you got an email from [the publisher]." 
Ah. AHH. AHHH! "What does it say?"
Long. Pause. "Uh, you can read it when you get home." (In case you didn't realize it, it was a rejection.)
I heard an author once say she got 89 rejections before she got representation. I have another friend who's gotten well over 100 for what I think is a great book. I think technically I have like ten. Which I've handled very well. (Mostly because I'm no where near 89 yet, which seems to be some kind of magic number for me. I'll probably start crying the closer I get to that ...) I've been known to actually walk away from the computer when I see the name of an agent or publisher in my inbox. Because it's like that cat in the box thing--as long as I don't open it, it could be a "yes." That's the same reason that I'm okay with every day that goes by that I don't have an email from a publisher or agent.

It could still be a "yes."

...Excuse me, I have to go check my email again. ...


  1. Do I ever know what that feels like! I'm not querying agents anymore, but I still check my email a dozen times a day to catch those last few rejections from the 4 or so queries I still have out. I've switched my focus on small presses for now. I know 70 rejections isn't really a lot, but I no longer think The Moongate is going to get any agent's attention.

    What publisher has your MS? Nosy minds want to know! ;)

  2. Have you read Ella Enchanted by Gale Carson Levine? Well, Levine worked for 10 yrs to get that book published and it has been on practically every best selling list! She is a mega author now. 10 yr. I don't know if I could do it, but she did! If you believe in something, keep going!