Wednesday, March 10, 2010


As a member of several great writer forums, I see fellow authors go through the same emotional ride during their writing process. I went through them, others also, and it’s a rite of passage so to speak for a writer.

Writing Your First Novel

Initially, you are so happy that you’ve decided to write a novel. You post the beginnings of that story online – and you think at that moment – that it's absolutely perfect. No edits needed. Then it get’s ripped to shreds, and you want to remove your creation from the boards and cry.

The determined writer, sucks it up (after a good cry, some candy, and a pep talk) and actually finishes the darned thing. Other’s fiddle with it, editing the first few pages or so – it never seems quite right – and alas – they never finish their books. Lastly, some workshop that baby to death, for decades and may never release it to the world.

Querying Agents

The newbie, whips up a letter – that they barely review and sends it out to agents with the expectations that the agents will be calling off the hook. The more experienced writer, painstakingly writes several versions of their query letters – sends it out to others to review/rip up. Then they research agents that are legit.

Rejection from Agents

Every author takes this personal. It’s like being passed over in school by the popular kids. We start to question the worth of our writing, story, our very purpose. Problem is – most of us couldn’t stop writing if we wanted to. That’s why the rejection from the first line of acceptance by the publishing world hurts so much.

Some authors figure that after a hundred or so reject letters, their work is no good - they trunk it. They put it away and decide not to ever pursue selling it again. They continue to write and go through this process all over again. Other authors decide to query the publishing companies directly, rework the darned thing, or to pave their own unconventional path to publication.

Acceptance from Agents

Elation, joy, and then a peacock moment. You strut around your house, yell then scream with excitement, because you are now a member of the ‘in’ crowd – you are validated as a writer.

Lesson from the Wise

When you start the writing journey, don’t take any of those tumbles personal for long. Work at improving your work. Grab every comment, feedback, assistance you can to create a better project. Most writers have edited, beta’d, and reworked their manuscript at least twenty or so times before they even query an agent. Keep your chin up and don’t ever give up. In this business, only the strong survive. Be strong, be determined, and find your own way.


Kirsten Lesko said...

And what a roller coaster it is! Once you finally think it's over, you have to worry about staying published. The stress seems to never end, but I think it gets easier the more you get used to it.

Sheri Larsen said...

Wow! Did you hit some of that on the head, especially the hard candy part. I like Hotheads. Out now. I'm trying to edit ms #2 without the sugar high. It's amazing how comforting it is to hear my ponderings from someone else. Thanks for sharing, LM.

LM Preston said...

I sighed when I wrote this, but I thought it would be useful.