What’s my dream job?
I’ll give you ten guesses.
A handful of you have approached me cautiously, carefully, to quietly ask, “How’s your novel going?” When asked, I answer, but I don’t go around talking about the novel because it’s so dear to me, and the whole process of writing a novel and submitting it to agents is like stripping naked and going door-to-door in a neighborhood full of really attractive people, arms out and asking, “So what do you think?”
Thank you for handling me with kid gloves because it’s been a challenging year. I’ve been rejected 38 times. Actually, that’s not entirely true. I’ve been rejected 22 times and ignored the other 16.
But let’s be Silver Lining People for a moment and look at the bright side. I’ve had three agents ask for the full manuscript after reading the first three chapters – which is a big deal – and all three of them were from well-known national and international agencies. One agent in particular wrote a lengthy rejection letter that included some inspiring words, like:
“You’re one to watch,” and –
“Many writers have to write that first novel and get it out of the way so they can write the one that will sell,” and –
“Don’t let this discourage you,” and –
“I hope you’ll consider submitting to me again.”
I jumped on the last part and told her I was already at work on a second novel, and when it’s finished, could I send it directly to her? She said absolutely. After a good cry, I resolved that her rejection letter was the best out of the bunch and I was lucky to have captured her attention.
It’s true that I’m working on a second novel and I’m loving it just as much as the first one. The difference between now and then is that I’m not finding (or making?) as much time to work on it. I could sound off a list of excuses, but instead I’ll tell you that I’m participating in NaNoWriMo for the second time and hope to use the month of November as a catalyst for finishing the story in a timely manner.
So what’s my dream job? Doing exactly what I’m doing now but with a solid shelf of published books in every bookstore and a faithful group of followers who enjoy reading my stories.