By my calculations, in the thirty-three months since I first began my journey to publication, all-in-all I’ve spent roughly nineteen months waiting.
Waiting to hear back from contests…was my story good enough to advance to the next round? Waiting to hear back from editors with one of my proposals or full manuscripts on their desk…would I receive a rejection, would I receive a revision request, or (dare I hope) would I receive “the call”? Waiting to hear back from agents I dared to query…would one of them see something in my writing and be willing to sign me even though I’ve never been published?
What’s been the results of all my waiting?
Waiting to hear back from contest has resulted in a request for a proposal and two full manuscripts. Waiting to hear back from editors (after the contests) has resulted in one rejection and two revision request. Waiting to hear back from the agents resulted in me signing with a reputable agency and ending up with an agent who is encouraging and supportive.
Is the waiting over? Not by a long shot! As a matter of fact, I’m waiting right now. Two weeks ago, I resubmitted one of the manuscripts that had received a revision request. And, I suspect, even when I’m finally a published author, there will still be a lot of waiting involved.
So, besides twiddling my thumbs, what can I do while I wait?
My tbr (to be read) pile is exceptionally large at the moment, so any time I get a chance, I’m going to read. Which is exactly what I did yesterday, when I read my friend Cate Nolan‘s wonderfully suspenseful debut novel Christmas in Hiding.
Remember, I still have another manuscript with a revision (second one on this story) request. This revision request is from the same publishing house as the revised manuscript I just resubmitted for consideration, and even though I’m not allowed to have two stories under consideration at the same time, I need to work through these revisions so the story is ready to resend as soon as I have the okay.
There is always research to be done for the next story. Any opportunity to plot, plan, and research prior to writing should be taken seriously since it can result in a cleaner first draft and ultimately fewer revisions in the long run.
Write a Rough Draft
Once the research is complete, I need to start my next manuscript. If either of the two manuscripts I have completed doesn’t sell, I’ll have another story in the works. Gotta keep moving forward to reach the goal. And, if one (or Lord willing both) of my manuscripts sells, I’ll still need another story ready to submit. At the moment, the goal may be to sell that first novel, but the ultimate goal is to be multi-published. 🙂