Friday, March 7, 2014

Friday Fricassee

Folks! This has been a SPECTACULAR showing of dedicated critters.  The number of crits for this Secret Agent round is higher than it's been in quite some time.  When I checked my email this morning, there were 51 new messages that came in overnight, and all but 2 were blog comments.  That's not even indicative of the actual number of critiques, because you know how gmail stacks messages, right?  Numbers like this are unheard of on the second night after the excerpts have posted.

Thank you!  What an outpouring of support for your fellow writers.  I LOVE THIS.

So I'd like to share with you how I'm STAYING SANGUINE DURING SUBMISSIONS.  (Seriously.  I hardly know myself.)

Josh started the submission process a couple weeks ago, and we're in full swing now.  Which means, aside from checking his handy-dandy spreadsheet far too often, I've had to redirect my energies so that I don't implode.  And I'm amazed at the ease with which I've been able to do this.  There is something to be said for being a "veteran" of the process, and I'm grateful.

Here's what this looks like for me:

  • I've immersed myself in a rewrite of the novel that lured snagged bamboozled hooked Josh in the first place.  The plot remains untouched, the characters are the same as they ever were.  But in the past 3 years, my writing has grown and changed, and I want this (beloved) story to reflect who I am today as a writer.  So I'm rewriting it with a fresh voice, in a new tense.  Josh is on board and seems excited to see the new version.  We're both still devoted to this novel, so this is a labor of love for me.
  • I've been working on a video presentation to share as a part of my high school theatre and music directors' retirements this year.  I'm unable to attend the tribute that some alumni have organized, so I'll be uploading my offering to the private youtube channel they've created.  This has been labor intensive, and I'm thankful for the time that Mr. A has devoted to it (he's my recording engineer, producer, editor, etc.).  Last night, WE THOUGHT WE'D LOST THE ENTIRE PROJECT.  All the files seemed to have disappeared from Premiere Pro.  As in, GONE.  It made no sense, since the project had been saved.  My husband started to fall apart a little bit.  (Okay.  A lot.)  Turns out the files were on a separate hard drive.  He hadn't realized the project files had been pointing to the hard drive instead of to the iMac.  So, yeah.  With this kind of creative crisis, who has time to think about submissions?
  • I'm planning for a visit from my parents a couple months from now.  There's nothing like focusing on family to take your mind off of "other stuff".  Because, in the end, "other stuff" is never as important as the people you love.
  • In the deep recesses of my brain, I'm planning a new story.  Right now, I'm using the word "planning" lightly, because I'm focusing on the rewrite.  But I've got a world (that I'm still developing) and a main character (who still needs a goal) and a play list (because, play lists).  And it's all sitting there in a not-so-tidy Scrivener file for whenever I want to spend more time on it.  For now, I'm happy to let it dance around inside my head.
When you add "regular life" to the above, you can see how effectively I can keep myself from obsessing about Editors Looking At My Thing.  It's a glorious editor list (with a few names I'm particularly excited about!), and I like looking at it.  But it doesn't have me in a chokehold.  And this feels magnificent.

I feel!

If there truly is a placing of "having arrived", then in this area, at least, I think I may have.  Not to say I don't have any emotions at all...and not to say that the rejections won't feel as poopy as they always do.  But the point is that I'm NOT OBSESSING.  I'm not CONSISTENTLY DISTRACTED.  And it's wonderful.

There's hope, fellow authors!  We really can lift ourselves from the constant, angst-filled tug of submissions, whether to agents or to editors.  And, truly, if I can do it, so can you.

So, hooray!  And happy weekend.


  1. i hate when i slip into the obsessing state of mind. That is definitely one of the worst places to be, especially since it's so hard to break free of it

  2. I'm glad the critiques are coming in! I'm going to check out a few more today.

  3. Sounds like you have lots to keep you busy during that stressful submission time...

  4. Congratulations, Authoress. Your enthusiasm shines through. Sounds like youve broken through the wall of self-doubt.

  5. These are some awesome 250-words. I am enjoying reading them. I stopped critiquing because it is hard to type on the phone. But I read so many of them and all I can say is "What a talented bunch of writers."

  6. I always have trouble with the word sanguine. It always makes me think of a magic card, sanguine bond, which is super-bloody.

    So I'm all like "she's bloody???"

    But I get it. And I'm super-happy that you're feeling so free--it's weird, kinda welled up a teary something in me. It's super-awesome when we as writers get somewhere comfortable like that.

    So go you!

  7. I'm also on the wonderful roller coaster of submission. Trying to focused on my wip to keep from becoming a nervous wreck and also checking the spreadsheet too often.

    I guess it comes down to having faith in your ms and your agent. Good things will happen!

  8. Hooray for you! Your stick-to-itiveness is inspiring. I agree with Michelle. Great things will happen!

  9. My latest manuscript is about to go out on submission as soon as my agent has a chance to read the revised version. I've already started plotting the next book in the series and after talking to said agent on the phone yesterday, she gave it a thumbs up so that's where my focus will be. I know how you're feeling right now, kind of a mix of excitement and anxiety, but a new project is a great distraction. Hang in there!

  10. Congrats on being on submission! That is way too exciting--even with the distractions, I don't get how you're so calm! And I love taking old works and revamping them with better writing. That's what I'm working on now...what a pain in the bu--I mean, a joy. Actually, both :)

  11. No matter whether it's about the joys of technological glitches or the agony of waiting, I always enjoy reading and be inspired by your posts. I hope you get some great news very soon!

  12. There were some seriously great first pages here. It was fun to read through all of them. I was pretty excited to be a part of the madness.

    And congrats on staying positive--rewrites can be fun, but they can be tough, too. Your optimism is a good example to follow :)

  13. This can be said for anything creative: singing, dancing, acting, etc. Especially writing. Like that Frozen song Let it Go, Let it Go!

    I act part time in plays for a living and when I audition I just do my best and hope that I get a call back.