Wednesday, April 27, 2011

W - Waiting, waiting, aaaand waiting

Trying to get published is an absolute lesson in patience.  Basically from the time you start writing to the time you actually see your book in stores is anywhere from three years to….eternity and beyond.

You have to wait until you finish your book, first of all.  I mean really finish it.  Then you wait while beta readers help critique (if they are as awesome as mine, they don’t keep you in suspense for too long).  Then you wait until you’ve completed the revision process.  Then you wait until your query is perfect.

Then you send it out and reeaaaaally wait.  This is the part you have no control over.  Agents take around two to three months to get to most queries. 

They ask for a partial. You wait a month.  They ask for more. You wait another month.  They offer you representation!!!  You wait until papers are signed (another month) to make the announcements.  They require revisions before they send it out to publishers.  You do them in a few weeks.  And then you wait awhile for the ‘okay’.  They submit your novel!!!  You wait anywhere from three to six months.  Editors finally get back to you.   They’re not interested.  You wait some more.  A house wants to publish it!  You get a book deal.  You wait to hear more info…weeks, months.  You find out your release date is a year from now.  Aaaand more waiting.

And this is a best case scenario.  If you’re like me, you have to wait until you write ‘the book’ as well - which precedes all the other waiting there is to look forward to.  Now- I hate waiting.  I’ve said it before but I have the patience of a shitzu with bladder issues.  HOWEVER, since starting this whole endeavor, I must admit I’ve gotten better at it.

I don’t check my email a million times a day after submitting anymore. (at least, not after the first week)  I’ve stopped wondering about the when and the if and the how of it all and just figure ‘if it’s meant to be, it will be.’  I bide my time by writing (I’ve got a new YA romance in the works -A comedy that has me all wrapped up in writerly goodness) .  Blogging, and reading.  I’m not gonna lie - It took a LONG time to get to this point but eventually, I think everyone learns to wait if their forced to do it enough.  One thing is for sure- without this process, I don’t know if I would have ever really learned the true meaning of 'patience'.

How do you deal with the Waiting Game?

PS- I'm hoping to get my old background back eventually but apparently 'thecutestblogontheblock' has contracted a virus that made it impossible to see my blog or any of my friends blogs that used 'cutest'.  I want my creepy pink diner background back!  Oh Cutest!  How thou hast betrayed us all!

32 comments:

Sarah said...

I blog, write other stuff, I sketch out new ideas, and on many days I cope well. On others, I get really down, and that's when I turn to my writer friends for support.

Cheree said...

Oh, sometimes I really hate the waiting. I make sure I keep busy, writing the next "big hit" story always helps.

D U Okonkwo said...

i totally agree - publishing is a complete test of patience. I never considered myself a patient person but I've come to be.

Publishing will do that to you.

I just wish everyone would HURRY UP and make a decision!

In the meantime I blog, write, daydream, eat, and fantasise about about how awesome it will be when I finally have my book in my hands :o)

Jessica Bell said...

I try to convince myself that life is not going to change by constantly checking the clock. It take a few days to relax though after submitting something. Even a poem to a lit mag.

Anne Gallagher said...

I commiserate with other friends who are waiting. And then I take a lonnnng break, and then I write some more. Maybe if I put my nose to the grindstone I can have three books out to query at the same time.

Dianne K. Salerni said...

My favorite thing to do while waiting is revising old projects. I get a lot more enjoyment out of revising than drafting. First drafts are torture for me, and I make little progress if I'm feeling anxious while waiting for news.

Hart Johnson said...

I think the hardest is when they have your partial or full and you don't know the answer. I have dealt okay with waiting on queries, and the speed of the business (maple syrup in January). It works best if I send stuff right before I dive neck deep into something (like ABNA or one of these blog events)--then I am too busy to fret.

You crack me up as teh Shitzu with bladder issues.

Justine Dell said...

I used to not cope very well because I am obsessive and controlling. But after a year in the trenches, my better half has snapped me out of it.

I don't obsessive. I don't freak-out. I do other stuff. I've re-learned that there is a life outside of this life call writing. And it's wonderful!

~JD

Kelly said...

Waiting is such a big part of this business. Frustrating, but I just try to keep busy with another wip while waiting. It does get frustrating though!

Kelly Breakey said...

When waiting becomes to much I take a break and give myself a pass. I spend more time reading and visiting other blogs and turn my thoughts to other things.

Old Kitty said...

I'm yet to get past the clicking on my email's "new email" button!!!! I wish I could!!! It;s heartbreaking, depressing and so futile and yet I do this, click, click, click!! AAaaargh!!!!

Well done you for getting better at this waiting game!! I hate it! LOL!!!

But I love your new background - awww - it's got butterflies and pink stuff!! Yay! Take care
x

Matthew MacNish said...

I was going to say I liked this background, but now I won't.

Waiting? I don't know how I deal with it. I guess by writing and blogging, and I suppose it helps that I'm not currently submitting.

April said...

My life keeps me busy. Too busy, actually, as I've been beta'd and haven't had time to do anything about the revision that must come before I start submitting. Life kinda comes in spurts, and this spurt has lasted since December. LOL. One day, I'll have time to worry about what to do with all that waiting, and honestly, I envy you that worry! Not that I'm not enjoying my own life...but I'm just sayin'...it's like Speedy Gonzolaz on cocaine.

Carolyn V said...

Ugh! I hate the waiting game! I have to take on a project to make it through (like painting my house).

Laura Marcella said...

I don't like waiting either! Chocolate helps me get through it. :)

And YES, in response to your comment on my blog, I'm super excited for the Royal Wedding!!! I can't wait to watch it. I never had a crush on the princes or anything, but I love it that there are still monarchies in today's world. :) And I love it that Kate is a commoner. Every little girl dreams about being a princess and that unlikely childhood dream is actually coming true for her! Too cool!

Jennifer said...

I need immediate gratification so patience is my mortal enemy! Damn viruses don't these hacker people have anything better to do then make our lives miserable?

lbdiamond said...

Ugh, still figuring out how to manage the waiting game. ;)

Ricky Bush said...

I signed with a small publisher last August after querying every living agent. They put my manuscript through three thorough edits and then I fell in line behind the authors awaiting for their books to come out. Target date was Fall 2011. THEN, the publisher close up shop. Kaput! So, I'm back out there--waiting for answers to my queries. Hard to get used to the waiting game.

Angelina Rain said...

In publishing, you never stop waiting. I love my publisher. They don’t make me wait too long. After I subbed with them, I got the response a week later, which is very fast giving what most other publishers do. But then once the contract is signed you wait for the edits, and then you wait for the book to come out, and then once it’s out you wait for that first review (that’s as nerve wrecking as waiting for a response on a submission), and then you wait for that first royalty check to see how many books you’ve sold. And then, when you think the wait is over, you have another book coming out and the wait begins again. I just got my royalty statement two weeks ago, and last week I got the release date for my next book which will be out next week. I stopped playing the waiting game for a whole week!

Marisa Hopkins said...

Great post! Oh man, I have much waiting in store for me. I am not quite at the query stage (okay, like, not quite CLOSE to the query stage) and I must admit I'm not the most patient person in the world... good thing I have more story ideas just begging to be turned into novels to keep be busy when I get to the waiting stage.

Kathryn said...

Ooo, I like the butterflies! Very boho chic! :D Waiting game? Well, it's been over a year since I've been brave enough to start querying again, so until I'm convinced I can't do anymore tweaking with my WIP, I'm just going to write something else and fall in love with another story. :) Good luck!

Cynthia Lee said...

I'm not nearly as crazy as I was when I first started querying in February. It was exhausting and I just got tired of it.

Plus, I started writing a new book and that worked beautifully.

Janet Johnson said...

I would SO take your best case scenario. :) I have definitely improved with waiting, too. The first week after querying . . . Yikes! But now I'm like you. Patience is definitely a virtue I'm still trying to cultivate.

Nicole L Rivera said...

Lol. Love the Shiz-tzu analogy. I came into this thing called the publishing industry with the patience of a two year old on a pound of sugar (use to work pre-school, but I have shiz-tzu so I totally relate to your analogy as well ;) ) Any-who, almost two years in, I'm really good at the patience thing. I even got complemented on it twice! I had to have the people repeat it I was in such disbelief. My mom will never believe it. I'll need to record the next person to say it to show her proof--if that ever happens again. Anyway, I distract myself during the waiting thing. I work on something else or focus more on the blog or I rearrange the furniture in my apartment--anything to keep my mind off of the queries I'm waiting to here on.

Awesome post! You're almost to z!

Elana Johnson said...

Sorry about the blog background, but you made me laugh.

And yeah, waiting. It's in the business, baby, no matter what stage of the game you're in. In fact, I'm blogging about patience on Friday.

Too funny!

Candyland said...

I'm a horrible waiter. Good thing I chose to be a writer then :/

Marjorie said...

I feel like a total hypocrite when I tell my kids to be patient because I am the most impatient person there is. I do have a fun little thing I tell my kids though. It's an attempt to remind myself too. That if we are waiting we should be thankful, because it means that we are alive and able to wait.

Raquel Byrnes said...

I keep writing. I finished two other novels while I was waiting for the first to make the rounds with publishers. Good thing too, because the publisher that did bite...bought the three book series.

Not sure if I would've looked as good to them with one book written and the other two "in the works"...so waiting can be a good thing. Just too much of it drives me crazy.
Edge of Your Seat Romance

Kate said...

Waiting...and waiting... I know what you mean. We just have to be soooooo patient!!!!

Caitlin said...

Alcohol and coffee.

But to be honest I don't deal with the waiting game very well! Maybe one day I'll learn to be patient, but I'm in awe of those who take the waiting process in stride.

Stina Lindenblatt said...

I keep checking my inbox, but not to see if an agent has gotten back to me. I'm checking to read the blog comments and all the other writerly-but-non-agent-related stuff that comes to my inbox.

I told my kids they could never be writers. They're not patient enough. ;)

Love the new look of your blog, Katie. :D

Nicole Zoltack said...

Patience... yeah, I don't have a lot of it but I probably have more now than ever before.

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