Sunday, August 24, 2008

When to Let Go?

The age old question when writing & editing a book. When is it done? I can keep reading it and line editing it, over and over and still find things to change. Every. Single. Time. But when I'm sick of it and the only thing I'm changing are words I've already changed ten times before, it's time to move on. Then I spot a pesky typo or a left out word. Grrrrr..........!!!!!!! That's where I'm at with THIRTEEN. So I put a deadline on myself. August 31. NO. MORE. CHANGES.

Even though I've submitted it to one publisher (who requested it after a contest win) and one agent (who I pitched to at the RWA conference and who requested the proposal): I WILL begin agent queries this coming week (there, it's on record now).

Everyone suggests starting out slow with a handful of agents, gauge their reaction, make changes if I get any helpful feedback (that's a big if in this era of form response). Then after a round of rejections or time gone by, send out another handful. So I'm starting out with 4 agents. Count them: 4. Can you tell I'm scared?

It's not like I haven't been rejected before. CHASING SHADOWS was rejected by 35 agents, and only 1 of them requested a partial and 1 requested the full. And the book was rejected by every New York publisher who accepted unsolicited queries. So I'm not a newbie when it comes to rejections. The competition is fierce. I know what to expect. I've polished my armor. Even J.K. Rowling, Stephen King and John Grisham were rejected tons of times. I'm in great company.

It's just that, like every other writer thinks at this stage, do I believe my book is the best it can be? It has to be. Because if I have to read it more than one last time in the next couple weeks, I may burn it!

Time to fling open the doors and let the faeries fly free.

Until next time...