Tuesday, 10 March 2009
How important is attitude?
Another full request last Friday, so I'm back up to 2 "out there". Not to mention all the unsolicited queries and partials that are still pending.
It truly is a rollercoaster ride and no mistake. For a few days after I send the manuscript out there's an emotional high of excitement. With each subsequent rejection that period gets shorter and shorter. But the sting of disappointment proves hope is still alive and well and thriving in my weary breast. (Sorry, attack of the Bard there.)
I see a lot of submission Tales of Woe on my internet trawling. Writers' boards are very sociable places with lots of free advice to offer, but bitterness and negativity can lurk there too. You have to wonder about the effects years of rejection can have on some poor souls. And it can manifest as paranoid delusions about the publishing world being out to get them, or at least out to exclude them. When you've just had a knock-back, it's so easy to buy into that line of thinking. Believe me, I know. But it's futile and ultimately damaging to your long-term goals.
You can end up feeling like the victim in a Them And Us scenario of your own invention. But that doesn't bear scrutiny, when you think about it. Agents need writers for their very livelihood. Publishers ditto. Without the magical stories we weave these people would have nothing to edit, sell and make a mint on.
So don't give in to self-pity. If no one accepts your work, find out what's wrong with it and put it right. It's in no one's interest to knock you back; it's wasteful of everyone's time and energy.
There is no Great Conspiracy.
Except possibly the one your Ego is up to, trying to convince you you are a much greater writer than you really are.