I say that it's bad because I think sometimes it clouds my ability to make my own wise decisions. It invites in too many other voices and opinions, which of course are based on someone else's experiences, not my own, and then I feel beholden to listen to them. Which is not always wise. I need to trust my own voice, my own wisdom, my own intuitive knowings.
I spent the past six months writing a novel.
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There. I've said it. Just blurted it out.
And I've found that when I say that, the next question is always, "oh, really, so what's it about?" To which I must answer, "I can't tell you, yet." It's hard for me to not share more, but I know that in this case I must, and hope that others understand.
Because it is a delicate process. One in which it is dangerous to invite in too much opinion.
Now I find myself in the querying process. This means telling the people who have the power to take it somewhere larger, or not. It means that I am submitting a one page letter meant to encapsulate 70,000 words in such a way that an agent will find it intriguing and want to take me on as a client to sell my book to a publisher and launch my career right to the top of the New York Times Bestseller List so that I can call my real estate agent and buy the home of my dreams where I spend my remaining days sitting on my porch overlooking the ocean writing future novels on my laptop while the gentle breezes blow through my hair...
oops! did I just run away with that thought? (and how's THAT for a run-on sentence!)
It's the dream, of course. It happens. Really it does. Whether or not it will for me is yet to be seen.
For today, it's just the next thing on the to-do list.
1) Query five more agents.
2) Read possible rejection emails.
3) Pick myself up, dust myself off, and start all... well, you know.
Seriously? There IS a novel.
I HAVE done a countless number of read-throughs and edits and revisions. And I hope it doesn't sound too egotistical to say that after reading it through so many times, and being the one who created it, it still has the power to move me - to laughter - to tears - and occasionally to a cold shower. I like it. I really, truly do. I just hope that an agent and then a publisher and then several million other people do, too. Which of course is all subjective, now isn't it? The liking it part. I've never read a Stephen King novel, and he's done just fine in his career without me.
I'm a firm believer in "right time right place right agent." I firmly believe that it will sell. I'm just not sure yet how many zeros will be attached to the advance check. Or how many letters I will need to send to find that one right agent.
Meanwhile, I am starting to write novel #2. Not for the money. But because I have a story to tell.
Which more truthfully is why novel #1 was written.
Which also means that if it never goes anywhere other than those few confidantes, it will be okay.
Though I really hope and pray that it does. Go somewhere wonderful.
The number one rule of novel writing is show, don't tell. So I will wait til I have a finished, published book, then proudly show the world.
For now, please, I simply invite you to be patient with me when I can't tell you more. And to believe with me. Believe in the power of a dream. Believe in the power of beauty, truth, and passion.
Breathe in some fresh fall air. Take in a sunset. Give thanks for all that is good in your life.
With peace and blessings this day from me to you.