The publishing industry is a HARD place. First, you work for years to improve your craft. You join groups like the SCBWI and 12x12, you take classes from places like Storytellers Academy and of course there are conferences and webinars. You work and work, submitting, tinkering receiving rejection… after rejection… after, well you get the idea. But you keep going. Somedays the art the creative process is what drives you on, somedays it’s your tribe pushing you forward. But the uphill battle never changes.
Last month, after almost 2 years of waiting, struggling with lack of art or even an artist for my second book Q, I had to pull the plug and walk away. It was not an easy decision from the perspective of- This story many never see the light of an illustrated page. But, it was the right decision. No matter how hard you work, you always want the end product to be the best it can be. And sometimes, even with a signed contract, you know it will not be.
Thus, is the case with my story Q. So, I am back on the mountain, climbing the hill I really never left, this time with more weight on my back, another manuscript in my bag.
I am still submitting to agents. I have found some great ones, received some very positive rejections, but am still “homeless” in the literary world, but I am not giving up.
Just like my climb of Crough Patrick in Ireland back in 2001, shale layers slipping under my carefully placed feet, sliding me backward each and every step, I will succeed. I do not know what the final view might be, but, I will make it to the top because creating stories, falling in love with characters and giving voice to the voiceless is what makes me feel alive.
When you are signing contracts, especially before having an agent or when signing with an agent, do your research. Trust your gut. Then do more research. It is exciting to have the prospect of publication. But that publication has to be right, for you, for your book.
So, what now?
More submissions. More writing. I am attempting do to https://nanowrimo.org again. I am almost on track, but life keeps throwing me curveballs.
I am about to do a refresher with Storytellers Academy https://www.storytelleracademy.com with http://www.jimaverbeckbooks.com/ again. Best class I have taken in a while.
And that’s about it. Keep going people. When your knocked down, turn to your tribe, turn to your craft. Turn to the unwritten voices waiting for you and keep writing!