When You Just Don’t Have the Strength…

Posted by Rita Lorraine

business woman with ringbinders

So I just want to rant for a moment. Or maybe “whine” is a better word. Yeah, that’s it, I want to whine about something and I hope you’ll indulge me.

Do you ever feel like you just don’t have the strength for…well, anything? Me too! But in this case I’m not referring to just “anything,” I’m talking about submitting to an agent, editor or publisher.

I just don’t have the strength, y’all. I don’t feel like researching agencies, then researching the agents in the agency, then choosing an agent from the stable, then tweaking a query letter until my fingertips turn purple, then sending off my query letter and hoping, hoping, hoping–

Well, you get the picture.

I discovered my “vacuum” this morning, after a friend sent an alert about an agent who is looking for clients. I read his profile and his criteria for submission, and he actually sounded like a good fit. But suddenly, I thought: Write yet another query letter? Wait six weeks, and then if I don’t hear from him, nudge him…and wait another six weeks? And while I wait, hope and pray that he likes my story, and if he does, hope and pray that he hasn’t just signed someone who writes what I write in the genre that I write it — because if he has, why would he sign me???

All of a sudden the entire ordeal was too much for me. My brain shorted out. Because you see, publishing is exactly like what I described (well, sometimes. Some writers are able to get “in” instantly, but that ain’t me, y’all.). Sometimes publishing is nothing more than a glorified crap shoot. It’s researching and searching and sending and hoping, then researching and searching and sending and hoping again.

Sometimes it’s enough to make you pull out your hair, especially when you find an agent (or publisher or editor) who represents what you write and is looking to build his or her list. But many times, when you send your query, that agent (or editor or publisher) has just stopped accepting queries, or has just signed a client who writes the type of books you write, or has just seen the debut of a book just like yours – only with a different title.

So what do you do? Why, you keep it moving, of course. You take a deep breath and suck in some strength, and then you start looking again. You research, search, send and hope…until you find that special someone (in this case, an editor, agent or publisher) to try it again.

So this post is for those of you like me who sometimes just don’t have the strength to do…well, anything. Find that strength from somewhere, then get up and keep it moving. Because writing is what you do; it’s your life, your breath, your dream. Keep moving forward and what you’re researching, searching, sending and hoping for is bound to happen someday.

Best wishes and happy writing,
Rita Lorraine

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