Wednesday, November 03, 2010
Nerves of Steel
To write, you must have nerves of steel.
Even when you feel like you have nerves of wet noodles.
You need even more steel running through your veins when you start submitting to agents and publishers. Obsessive email checking, anxiously awaiting the postman's arrival, and checking Publisher's Marketplace for the latest new agent alert can be daunting. Yet if you want to be traditionally published, you have to go through it.
When I started querying agents for my first novel, those rejection letters hurt. As I've progressed to querying my second and third novels, those rejection letters still make me wince. But they don't hurt as bad as they once did.
That's a good thing. It's a sign of growth, of my thin skin being toughened up and growing thicker.
In a way, I'm grateful that my first novel didn't sell. Not only wasn't it up to snuff, but it gave me the chance to start developing those nerves of steel. I don't know that I would have been able to handle negative reviews or poor sales at that point in my writing career.
Now, I'm ready. They will still sting. They will still hurt. But I will be ready for them.
How are your nerves doing in this writing game?
Don't forget to enter the Christmas Short Story contest! Deadline is November 1. You can find all the details here!