Thursday, June 24, 2010

The Waiting Game

I am the first to admit that I have the patience of a shitzu with bladder control issues. It’s my ‘tragic flaw’.

So as you can imagine, the waiting that goes on during the querying process is excruciating for someone like me. One week after I send out a request, my fingers start to twitch. I try to occupy myself with editing another ms, or critiquing, reading, blogging, maybe even starting a new manuscript, etc…but eventually I give in to temptation and start looking at my email 50 times a frickin day. 

It’s like a prerequisite before I do anything else. ‘I gotta get dressed. But I’ll check my email first.’ ‘Gotta get the mail, but first let’s take a look at my inbox.’ ‘I should really make lunch…right after I take another peek. It’s been five minutes…you never know.’ Aaaaah! I’m slowly starting to go insane. I’ve had a partial ms out on submission since mid April and the twitchiness and restlessness is starting to get to me.

Some ideas I came up with so far that might help distract me:

1. 1. 5000 piece jigsaw puzzle
2. 2. Learn to speak japanese
3. 3. Start grounding my own baking flour from scratch
4. 4. Knit sweaters for next winter
5. 5. Go on a pilgrimage through the desert
     

       Any other recommendations for getting through The Waiting Game without going completely ‘refresh button’ crazy?

       
      Today’s question for God or Google  - why do we pee a little bit after doing our ‘business’?  It’s like the grand finale that says ‘yeah, you can probably get off the john now’.  Does it happen for boys too?  And if so, how do they manage that?







52 comments:

The Alliterative Allomorph said...

LOL I used to do exactly the same thing. I've stopped now though, I wasted SOOO much time watching the screen. I've had a full out since March 3rd. Now I'm dreading getting an answer in case it's negative. It'll subside. You just have to resist the tempatation sometimes. I dunno, slap yourself in the face?

Dianne K. Salerni said...

Why hit the refresh button when you can get a Droid phone, synchronize it to your Gmail account, and set it to loudly say, "DROID!" every time you get an email?

Then you can rush to the phone (or the computer) to find out that you've just received another Facebook update on somebody else's conversation thread.

That's what I do. A very satisfying way to augment an obsession! Plus you can annoy the entire family. ;)

Creepy Query Girl said...

lol- AA- My face would be black and blue

Diane- any way to get my phone to sing 'come on shake your body won't you do the konga?' whenever I get an email? I'd be dancin all day...

Candyland said...

OMG I refresh 40 times/second!!! It's a bad habit!

Old Kitty said...

Joining a convent? :-)

The pee question is something I would like to know the answer to because it so drives me crazy!! It can't just be a female thing can it?!?!?!?!

Good luck with your query!! I have everything crossed for you!!

Take care
x

Jaydee Morgan said...

I totally feel for you - I have a feeling that when that time comes, I'll be in the exact same boat. I've never been known for my patience. Good luck - and here's hoping that one of those refresh moments brings you the news you're waiting for :)

salarsenッ said...

I love speaking Japanese...in my fantasy land. A 5,000 piece puzzle rocks! I'll help. Love puzzles, but most do a shot each time you put a piece in the wrong place. Puzzles never get done at my house.

And to your God or Google question, I just may have a partial answer in my post for tomorrow. Seriously, and I've already written it. Creepy.

Kris said...

Oh, am I in the same boat here. I've got two fulls and a partial out, as well as six outstanding queries. I'm literally beside myself -- can't get any other work done -- updating my inbox and stalking said agents on twitter. It's not healthy. But I can't knit. Good luck! Hope you get something good in your inbox soon!

Aubrie said...

I check my email all the time. I'm just like you! And I haven't heard from any agents for over a week now, so I'm getting really antsy. It helps for me to get out of the house and that takes me away from it.

Good luck with your responses!

April said...

I'm so used to rejections, that I no longer wait in anticipation.

When I see it in my inbox, though, my heart jumps, and I have to take a deep breath before opening the email.

I'm always disappointed.

Well, except for the one partial request.

Then I was disappointed again.

Natalie said...

All I can say is it doesn't get better after you get an agent! I'm still a serial email refresher. I'd like to hope it gets better after the book deal comes, but I kind of doubt it. There are still too many exciting things that could come any day. So embrace your compulsion. It's part of being a writer. :)

Piedmont Writer said...

When you figure it out, let me know. I haven't been able to do anything since I sent out my queries from this last round. I can't even concentrate on a 16 piece puzzle never mind a 5k.

Lisa K. said...

I'm like that too about checking my inbox a ridiculous amount of times. I have a little "ding" that sounds every time a new message comes and most days I try to just turn off my speakers so I'm not checking it every single time I hear it. It's even worse when I know I'm about due for a response on something: a query, a submission, comments on a new blog entry. It's a terrible thing, lol.

Vicki Rocho said...

I'm a long way from queries, but I consider myself in training, so I'm already checking my email 50 times a day. hahaha. You gotta build up the muscles in your clicking finger, you know? What if I sprained it and couldn't TYPE? That's of course when I'd get the deal of the century but I'd be unable to type with my crippled hand....do you see how serious this is?

(switching hats)

How can I not answer the pee question? I'm not a doctor, but this is how I imagine it: Picture a busy expressway. Traffic is backed up for miles so the vehicles at the on ramp have to wait for traffic to clear before they can get on with their journey. hahaha! Now ask me why you (not you specifically, that was a global female you) go when you sneeze!

Theresa Milstein said...

Only the pilgrimage is realistic. And by that I mean, the only thing that will truly keep you from checking the mailbox and e-mail.

I just began querying, so I hear you. Some of these equery responses come back fast, so I'm a mess almost immediately.

Teresa Stenson said...

Yeah, always checking my emails or the webistes of story prizes I've entered, just in case they've announced the winners in the last 3 minutes since I last checked.

Re: pee (nice) - erm, probably because we have ultra efficient bladders that like to remain as empty as possible any chance they get, so we can top up with wine at any time.

JustineDell said...

HAHAHAHA!!! I love your lists. I'm obessed with email to. It the reason I can't finish my current WIP. I'm to busy thinking about the responses that I could be getting any second!

~JD

Dawn said...

My husband LOVES when I send out queries. I bake a lot, clean the house, do yard work... And then I snap, which he doesn't like so much. It's like PMS for writers or something.

Renae said...

I feel your pain! I used to be the exact same way. Now that I have an agent...I'm almost worse. I'm still attached to my inbox even though I've been told the process is even longer. I guess that's our lot in life!

By the way Good Luck with your querying.

Falen said...

i try to work on another project.
Still, it's hard...

Mary McDonald said...

Are you sure you weren't peeking in my windows when you described your day? ;-)lol. That was me to a T. I tried to get out of the house when I could, otherwise I couldn't resist the temptation.

February Grace said...

Oh, you see now I am so picturing a video montage of your day, CQG, set to The Waiting (is the Hardest Part) by Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers...

I think that the Universe makes sure that the most impatient people in the world are also the most inclined to become writers. The Fates are mocking us.

An aside since they came up: Droid phones terrify me. I think they're out to take over the world.

Seriously. Don't say I didn't try to warn you all. The day is coming when they're gonna go all Dalek or Cylon or Borg or Imperial Probe Droid on our a**es. Trust me.

bru

Eric W. Trant said...

I do that at first, but then, after a while, it loses its draw.

- Eric

Talli Roland said...

It's terrible, I know! Is there any chance that you can start training for a marathon? Physical exhaustion might be the way forward!

Matthew Rush said...

I've never had the problem with checking my email incessantly - just thinking about it a lot. Probably because I was so ignorant I started querying before I finished even my first draft and then the rejections came pouring in while I was still distracted with writing.

You Europeans and your obsession with the loo!

The Alliterative Allomorph said...

Matthew: That must be because us Europeans are surrounded by macho men who belch and fart without a care in the world :o) It's just second nature to us, I think? Whatcha reckon, Creepy?

Steena Holmes said...

I just sent out a full on Sunday ... and I'm already nervous ;)

For me, I'm trying to keep my mind off it by working on my current WIP. I have 11 chapters left to write.

Creepy Query Girl said...

I agree AA!- Hell, most of the french expressions resemble flatulence in some way;)

Shannon O'Donnell said...

If you find a magic cure today, let me know. I am right there with you on this one! :-)

The Empress said...

I think it's the not knowing what the status is. Like, "am I waiting for nothing " b/c they lost it all? I just want a status,like,
"yup. it's here."

Elle Strauss said...

I hate to break it to you, but the waiting game never ends. Never. First query, then subs, then book launch, then second book sub, etc. I'm in wait-hell with books on submission, a writer friend of mine was just told by her agent that she didn't want to submit the second book idea to her editor until after the first book launched, hoping that good sales will boost the editor's enthusiasm for the second book? (I don't know)

Getting interested in non-writing activities is not only a good idea, but necessary to keep sane in this business. imho

DL Hammons said...

Bejeweled. I have it on my iPhone and when I play it hours seem to pass by. :)

Bekah said...

I start the NEXT ms, or two. Or work out, because I AM THERE TOO.

Melissa said...

I haven't even sent anything out yet, but I do the refresh thing all the time anyway because I want to know if anyone sends me any email, ever and I think they can do at anytime. I can't imagine how horrible I'm going to be when I actually get that far.

Your ideas are hilarious, but all time consuming, anyone will work I think... Good luck.

Carolyn V. said...

I HATE the waiting game! I hope it will end soon. =)

Lindsay (a.k.a Isabella) said...

I hate waiting too. I'm going to be an email freak when I start to query. lol.

Julie Musil said...

The perfect solution? Start something new and get your mind off the current query!!!! Even if it's an article or short story. That's my advice, and I'm stickin' to it.

Kelly Dexter said...

I do the same thing. And I vote for number four. Knitting is relaxing. I would do it more often if I wasn't in Florida, as it's difficult to find the motivation in the relentless heat.

LTM said...

OMG OMG OMG!!! That's me. I'm sorry, I try to act like a normal person, but I walk by my laptop like every five mins now (since I downloaded the whole gmail notifier. C'mon blue envelope... c'mon blue envelope... d'oh!)

I can agree w/all those who say "start a new MS." That does work. It worked for me. It still works. I mean, I can totally LOSE myself in a new book... tried that? I should be linda richmond and give you a topic... umm... I've been kicking around trying my hand at a SciFi...? Yes?

Ellie said...

Sorry, I have moments like this, when I'm expecting something. I think if you can leave, do so. If not, set a timer and make it a contest to avoid checking til the timer goes off. Take photos, do some other artistic endeavor..sing,
read, paint your nails, then you can't touch anything, then your toe nails, then make pizza dough, when nails are dry, of course. Be sure to knead the dough, get all sticky, can't get online....

I think nerves, cause us gals to go a bit more...
Good luck!!!

Slamdunk said...

Great suggestions. I am thinking that at least by checking your email that often, you had probably read every spam message that has been sent to you as well--now that can be a source for creative writing.

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Kathryn said...

Find a TV series on Netflix, start watching it and become addicted. Apparently it either works or makes you go crazy. For instance, I'm currently in love with "Roswell"...

... need I say more?

WritingNut said...

Ahhh... I am obsessed with email right now too. I am constantly checking my phone and refreshing the page - in between everything I do! It's a vicious cycle, and I haven't even finished my current WiP!

Clara said...

Wow, that question at the end was awesome!!! Hahahaha so random! And I have no idea!

Hum, I guess everything you try to do, will eventually lead you back to your inbox. i.e.: Gotta finish knitting this coat, but will check the inbox for five minutes. and so on. Thats why the waitting game sucks big time!

Christina Lee said...

Oh puh-lease, you and me both. Fingers crossed for both of us!

Laura Pauling said...

So true. But I've reached the acceptance stage and have mentally moved on.

Anne said...

Hmmm how about a browser based game that also requires you to check your comp every two minutes. At least that way you have a different excuse. :)

Lisa and Laura said...

The waiting never ends. Seriously. It's ridiculous. This business is so SLOOOOOOOOOOW.

notesfromnadir said...

Make a deal w/ yourself that you'll only check once per hour. See if that works.

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Stina Lindenblatt said...

I have a partial out (not bad for not having started querying yet), but I'm not worried about it. I already know from the reply email that she's going to get back to me in the next 4-6 weeks. You know, when I'm away on vacation with no internet access. ;)

In the meantime, I'm going to start querying, catch up BIG TIME on my YA reading, and finish the preplanning of my new project. With the kids off school, that's all I'll have time for. :D

Good luck on your wait!!!!

Virginia McGarity said...

Shoveling horse poop helps, at least there's no wifi in the barn...

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