The Waiting Game

Workout Song of the Day: “Shake It Out” by Manchester Orchestra

Weight Loss Thus Far: 9 Pounds Baby–woot woot!

Let’s face it, no matter what stage you’re at in your writing career, you’re always going to be waiting for something. You WAIT to hear feedback from your beta remembers and keep your fingers crossed that they find your manuscript as brilliant as you do. You WAIT to hear from agents after a query/partial/full and keep your fingers crossed that they find your manuscript as brilliant as you do. You WAIT to hear from publishing houses as your manuscript goes out on submissions and keep your fingers crossed that they find your manuscript as brilliant as you do. You WAIT to hear from the public after your book finally hits shelves and keep…yadda yadda yadda.

So, what can you do in the midst of all of this waiting? Kiddies, take out your pencils and paper–we’re taking a quiz! Don’t worry, it’s multiple choice.

When waiting for any information that will either make or break your writing career, you can:

a. Stare at your email inbox. Refresh said email inbox. Ask friends to send things to you in said email inbox to make sure it actually works.

b. Go visit other writer blogs/forums and smile through gritted teeth as you hear about all of the good news that seems to have fallen on everyone except for you.

c. Go to the bookstore. Buy a new book. Then smirk and grumble something about how you could’ve written it sooo much better. Then hang your head down in shame seconds later because you’ve officially become a “hatah.”

d. Become a recluse. Stare out your window and watch the squirrels rummage through the grass. Then, in your best Clint Eastwood impression, cry out: “Get awf my lawwnnn!”

e. Write something new.

f. All of the above.

Okay, I’ll take either E of F (though I would be concerned that you may have watched Gran Torino too many times). It’s okay to fret with how your “baby” will be perceived by others. If you didn’t care, then it means that you don’t care about the process. Your goal is to make your writing the best that it can possibly be–so go ahead. Worry a little.

But I cannot stress how important it is to keep writing. Create an outline for a new novel. Write up a character sketch. Work on a short story. Just make sure to keep the creative juices flowing. This way, you’ll be more prepared to tackle those dreaded (but worthwhile) revisions. Additionally, it’s always good to have a backup plan because there have been cases where the first manuscript never breaks through. Sometimes it’s the 3rd or 4th. Scary, huh? But I’m a sucker for being spooked.

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2 thoughts on “The Waiting Game

  1. LOL- great post ๐Ÿ™‚ I was leaning more towards answer D myself- Clint Eastwood if my freakin' Idol!!! Anyway, you're very right about continuing to write, I was in the middle of my first novel when my idea for my second sprouted through. I'm working on kinking out the deets on that, but as soon as I do, I'll be writing again! YEAH! And I agree, it does always feel like we're WAITING! I couldn't have put it better myself…though I may try to on my blog soon enough- after this post has worn off on yours of course ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. I would do all of the above with a few modifications: A) Get yourself a gmail account so that you save yourself the hassle of having to manually refresh your email as you stare at it, willing a query response to come in.B) Go to the writers forums and seek out equally miserable people that you can commiserate with.C) Go to the bookstore. Buy a new book. Then smirk and grumble something about how you could've written it sooo much better. *Revel* in the fact that you have officially become a "hatah"D) Become a recluse at the gym. Hey, at least I can lose weight while I remain an unpublished writer.All kidding aside, I have to say that the waiting is as exciting as it is excruciating. For all unpublished writers, this query stage is just like the beginning stages of a romantic relationship. Will he or won't he?Unfortunately, for the most part, the answer is that he won't. But we know there is someone out there who will think we are fabulous, so the search continues!

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