Saturday, June 11, 2011

Being Human Sucks (sometimes)

Ok, so yesterday's blog post was emotionally driven after receiving two rejections on query letters and a rejection on a partial.  (I'm not going to hide that I get rejections).  Today, I received another rejection on a partial.  I wish I could say that the "feedback" was consistent between rejections, but it's not.  It's cryptic and not one has been clear enough for me to say, "Ahh.  I can fix that."  So, I go out on a limb and email back (politely) and ask for some clarification explaining that I only want to fix whatever is wrong.  I've tried this approach probably four or five times in the past six months (between both books' queries), and I've NEVER gotten a response.  So, I once again have no idea what's wrong with my book.  This is problematic because it hinders my improvement as a writer.  And before someone comments that I need critique partners, I've been down that road.  I love them all and take to heart every word they say, and I always make changes I agree with or can't argue my way out of.  That being said, ultimately, it's the agents who give the approval.  There's my complaint for the day.

Today, I've decided to make a "writer's wish list".

1. Of course, I wish to be published and traditionally.  There's something to be said for having someone pay ME to publish my book(s). I can remember being in high school and girls saying they were models, yet they were paying for their photo shoots.  That doesn't equate to modelling to me.  That says I'm paying someone to take my pictures.  Hell, I could have my husband take my picture and put it on the web.  That doesn't make me a model.  LOL!

2. I wish an agent would take me on and groom my writing.  I'm a good writer - grammatically and structurally.  I also have an extremely firm grasp on the elements of a story.  I teach it every day and I majored in creative writing in college.  As an English teacher, it's my job to know grammar and fluency.  I had to write a 44 essay portfolio, which is now a sample for future students, and I received a perfect score on my writing proficiency exam in college.  Am I bragging?  Yes.  Because I can write.  Does this mean I'm a stellar author for fiction? No.  So, taking me on may mean asking me to revise, but I can do that and I'm open to learn, so I make a good student as well.

3.  I wish I didn't care as much as I do.  Receiving rejections is gut wrenching.  I send out the queries and hope every time that I'll receive a request for a partial/full, and I do get those, but the rejections based on a query hurt because I feel like I wasn't even given a chance.  Even worse than that, rejections on the partials/fulls sting like hell.  I just had one request the first fifty pages after having read the first chapter.  I thought for sure it would lead to a request for a full because they'd already read the first chapter.  Instead, I got a rejection.  That SUCKED! My poor husband felt the wrath on that one.  Therefore, I wish I didn't care as much.

4. I wish someone would come to me and say "write this idea and I'll give you a grade on it."  I'm such a better student/writer when I know there will be feedback.  I'm not going to pretend that I can write the next epic novel, but if it's in my genre, I can do it or at least I'll try my damn hardest.

5.  I wish I could say to the agents whom I've grown to respect based on their websites, twitter personalities, etc. that I'd love for them to represent me.  Don't get me wrong, I can say it write now, but I know I wouldn't get a response and that would be pointless.  I know I ranted yesterday that there are some really unprofessional agents on the web, but I must also point out that there are some who are kind and considerate as well.

6. I wish it was easier to get an official critique from an agent.  I followed the auctions over the past couple of months and quite a few agents offered their critiquing services, but they all went for over $1000.  I don't know about you guys, but I don't have $1000 just sitting around.  With two kids, every spare dollar goes to them and I still consider my writing a hobby of sorts.  I can't justify spending $1000 or even $500 on a critique that may or may not even help. 

So, that's my writing wish list.  I mentioned yesterday that I pride myself on honesty and I still do.  Blogging is like therapy because I know I can say anything.  I still think about what I say because of repercussions, but this is me - take it or leave it.  I love that I've made friends online, but the odds of us all coming together in one room are slim (not saying I wouldn't meet them though), so I'm able to say what I'm thinking and hope that even one person in the blogosphere can relate. 

That's it for today.  I probably won't post tomorrow because it's Sunday and I have to clean the house after a week of play dates and chaos, and I'd like to spend some time working on my new WIP. 

Have a great weekend, everyone.  I hope to hear from you all in the comments section. :)

2 comments:

  1. I don't see anything wrong w/ posting about rejections. They happen, to everyone, lots of times. You take the good and the bad. And I agree on the critique bids. That is much, if it could start a career maybe, but it's still a gamble. Hang in there girl and we'll get this together! Just keep writing.

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  2. Have you considered skipping the agent? There's plenty of small press publishers that don't require agents and will still work with you the same way an agent would.

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