Wednesday, August 05, 2009

The Inevitable

Ok. I don’t like this part. I admit to a healthy case of dislike. A really strong case of dislike but I know it’s inevitable.

I’ve edited my book twice all the way through. Once online and once by hardcover. Now I’m going through it chapter by chapter with my critique partners. I’m still finding errors.

I want it to be the best work I’ve ever done so far.

But I also wrote my query letter. I had to start that part too because I know it will take a few attempts to get it just right.

And then I really got nuts and sent it out to an agent. On a Friday night at 5:50PM.

You guessed it. At 9:20 AM Monday morning, the first rejection appeared in my inbox.

Yup—that fast.

So maybe I don't have the query letter down yet. Maybe I selected the wrong agent who really didn’t represent what I wrote—maybe I didn’t do my homework as well as I should have done.

But I had to try. It’s sort of like taking a lick of the frosting on the cake before it is time to officially cut and serve it. Just a taste.

But I admit to this. I don’t like this part. Not at all. But it’s inevitable.

What part of writing are you struggling with today?


Jody Hedlund said...

Oh, Terri! I'm sorry. Such is the life of the world of query letter rejections! Most of us have garnered many, many! They always make your heart sink down for a little bit and rightly so, they're disappointing. But, we just keep plugging forward, and trying, and growing! Good for you for giving it a try!

Jessica said...

Blech. Revisions.

I'm sorry for the rejection too, but go you on sending one out!!! I did the same thing. LOL It's just like getting that first one out of the way for me, a dip in the water, like you said.
I'm very excited for you. Keep on with the query letter and know that it might not have even been the letter at fault. :-) Maybe the agent is all filled up on women's fiction right now?

Cindy said...

Terri...I'm sorry for the rejection. I didn't even know you sent it out :( But I know you believe in your story and I think it's great! Rejections are hard but in hindsight always seem to have great purpose. Keep going, I know there's something wonderful waiting for you.

Jeannie Campbell, LMFT said...

poo on all of the above. poo on agents who reject so fast. poo on getting rejected. poo on doing revisions. POO!

but are going through the rite of passage of writers. what an exciting time (in the long run). have endurance! you're in the best company! :)

Janna Qualman said...

It's so exciting to dip one's toes in! I'm happy for you, Terri, for giving it a whirl. And despite the rejection disappointment, at least you've got the first one out of the way.

I'm trying to find the oomph to keep writing. Got to find AND KEEP the groove.

sarah said...

You are so totally human and a risk taker. I love that you are a risk taker. You'll get it. You'll hit on that right agent. You'll finetune that query. I recognize that fighting spirit. It's cool. The place I'm at - I have books sold and I agreed to speak at a church in the fall and a radio show booked but no publisher yet. I feel like this is all happening backwards and have to fight not to be discouraged. Sarah

Lazy Writer said...

I'm so sorry about the rejection! I've been there, and it has to be one of the worst feelings in the world. Right now, I'm struggling with gearing myself up for the next round of queries! Keep sending your work out, Terri. Remember, it is a subjective business!

Krista Phillips said...

Yeah!!! Sending out the first one and getting that FIRST rejection is a HUGE step! I figure most authors have to get rejected at LEAST the first time, so woohoo on getting it out of the way fast!

It might be that the agent decided to spend a few hours clearing out their query inbox over the weekend, so that is why it was so fast, too.

But anyway, good for you for putting it out there!!!

Yolanda said...

Getting ahead of God.

Sounds so simple, and yet it can be the most difficult....wisdom waits.


Rose Mary said...

Sorry, Terri~I've been there. Rejections, especially 'fast' ones, are never easy to take.

And revisions are just never, never finished as far as I can tell. But at some point you just have to send it and trust that it is the best it can be.

Keep trying! There are a lot of us in the same boat with you.

Lin said...

I agree revisions are never done. You just have to decide at some point to give birth to the baby. It's a courageous thing to do and rejection is part of the process. Hang in there, exert some faith and hope, then patience as you wait...

Jan Cline said...

Confidence. I am so afraid that my WIP is boring. It's my first fiction work and I am pretty intimidated.

Embee said...

You'll get representation, it's just a matter of time. I hear writers get lots of rejection before they get acceptance. Just part of the game.

I'm struggling with focus. There are so many things I want to write so I need to decide on one thing and finish it!

Then I, too, can experience the rejection I so richly deserve as a writer!!!

Andrea said...

OH MY!! Sounds a bit stressful. Know we are praying for you and for all involved in the publishing process.

Stephanie Faris said...

Rejection is inevitable. It doesn't mean you don't have the query part down...just that what you're writing isn't right for that particular agent at that particular time. That just means you ship it off to MORE agents.

BeckyJoie at Leaders in Learning said...

So sorry, Terri.

My struggle today is with the amount of distractions I've had from writing. It affected my motivation to persist today.

Amy De Trempe said...

Sorry for the rejection. They are tough. But, pat yourself on the back for putting yourself out there. Right now,I am struggling with edits. Wouldn't writing be so much more wonderful if we wrote it perfectly the first time (I like to live in a dream world - lol). Keep trying. You will find the perfect agent/publisher for you.

Heather Sunseri said...

Terri, I am so sorry! The whole process is challenging, but rejection is so personal! The rejections, especially the quick ones, hurt deeply. My husband always says the first rejection is great. You've got that one out of the way so that the agent that is right for you can come along. Chin up, girlie! I'm pulling for you. :)

Greg C said...

When I first started writing technical procedures, I would go over and over and over them to make sure they were perfect. Then when they got to the first person for review, they would point out many mistakes. I would get upset and then angry because I knew I could do better. Maybe I was trying too hard. So the worst part for me is when someone else finds mistakes in my work. I guess it is a pride thing.

Keep sending out those letters. Maybe that first person was just having a bad day. Just think of all the great works that were passed up by the first person who saw them.

Donna M. Kohlstrom said...

Sorry you had to get rejected! Boo-hoo! Praying soon that you will get all your edits/revisions done and will find the right agent/editor who'll send that long awaited acceptance letter.

Kristen Painter said...

Sorry about the rejection. They suck.

I struggle with the actual writing. It's not my favorite part. I much prefer when the writing is done and I can work on editing and polishing.

Galen Kindley--Author said...

I’m an expert on nothing. I know, almost nothing. But, I read Author Chris Roerden discussing agent rejections. She was at a convention where there were oh…six…agents in a panel on stage. The moderator read various query letters. The agents were to raise a hand when they personally would have stopped reading.

I think in the six or seven letters read, all hands were up by the end of the first paragraph. Many hands were raised at the end of the first two or three sentences. Some within the first sentence! Cruel—and actually rude, I think.

So, I guess the message is get the best you’ve got in the first two or three sentences, because the reader may get no further. Sad, but apparently true.

Best Regards, Galen
Imagineering Fiction Blog

Kathryn Magendie said...

Gawd, yes, the query and rejection - ugh! The hated part, but the inevitable one.

I applaud you for taking that first plunge *CLAP CLAP CLAP CLAP CLAP CLAP!*

I wrote on my blog today about the "labels" we place on ourselves, or what we call ourselves or whatever- I see writers struggle with this so much.

Right now, though, my immediate "fear" is the second book - will everyone like it just a smuch as tender graces? or will I dsappoint everyone-oh the pressure! So, I just write, like I did with TG - write what I want to read, what the character asks....and let it go.

Chelle Sandell said...

So sorry about the rejection! But I'm so excited that you're ready for the journey!! So many people never even complete the book and reach this stage. Be proud and push on. Take comfort in your faith and know that it will happen!

Carmen said...

At least you have the guts to send in something that is so precious to you. Not everyone sees the beauty in a masterpiece, but someone will eventually. I know you'll keep on trying!

Jennifer Shirk said...

Ugh. Sorry, Terri. You want an answer fast but not THAT fast.
But keep trying! It's only one person's opinion.

Helen Ginger said...

Getting a rejection is tough - but it means you've started sending the baby out. You go, girl! Put an X by that agent's name for this go-round, polish the query and move on.

And remind me not to eat cake at your house.

Straight From Hel

elaine @ peace for the journey said...

Doing it...

My time is not my own right now. Hang in there, Terri. Now that the 1st one is over, you can get on with the getting on!


Nancy said...

I know you will rework your query letter and send it to a new and imnproved market.
I dislike very much going back through my book and fixing it up. I usually need at least three revisions and then I still find mistakes,too. Best wishes. I know you'll get there.

Susan J. Reinhardt said...

Ouch, Terri! I'm so sorry. Those rejections sting.


Delrose said...

I love the photo for your inspirational opening. Find myself day dreaming just looking at the peaceful scenery. Sorry about the rejection. I am helping my husband with his autobiography. Never written before. Have no clue what I am doing. Need help with everything especially motivation. Any and all help will be greatly appreciated.