So, my manuscript, Awfully Appetizing, has been accepted for publication through Winlock Press. It’s amazing, and wonderful. I’ve been working towards this moment for over a decade, and I don’t mind admitting that I squealed and did a little happy dance when I found out that somebody wanted to publish something I’d written.
I’ve completed about half a dozen manuscripts so far, but this was the first one that somebody actually looked at and said ‘yes, we want to see that in print’ to. Besides the half a dozen completed manuscripts, though, I’ve started about ten times as many which I never finished. Or, at least, I haven’t finished yet.
All of this is to emphasize that it has been a long, hard, exhausting road getting here, and I am truly and profoundly thrilled to be here.
But as exciting an experience as this is, it’s also, simultaneously, incredibly boring.
When I’ve listened to authors speak about their experiences, they usually discuss the time when they were writing and hoping to be published, and the time after they were published. I don’t think I remember more than one or two of them referencing that period in between. Except when the company that accepted them ended up going under before they put her book out. That sounded awful. But right now I am in that moment, when there is so much work still to be done, and so little work that I can do. Oh, certainly, I’m working every day to finish the rough draft of book two, and I’m working with a friend to try to put together a website. But all of that is secondary. The real work, the editing, finding cover art, figuring out how to get the book in front of the right people, that is all out of my hands. It all needs to be done, but right now my publisher is doing it.
While I sit twiddling my thumbs, wondering what happens next.
This isn’t a critique of my publisher. Winlock is very good about including its authors in the process, and, truth be told, the whole project is going through the system incredibly fast. But at the moment, I am not involved in the process. It’s a bit like sending your children off to school, I would imagine. You know that you’ve done everything you can, but you can’t help but worry about all of the things that might go wrong. All of the decisions that seemed so right and obvious in the moment now strike you as potentially foolhardy. You have to be ready, every day, because if something is requested of you, you want to get it done, to get things moving again, just as fast as you possibly can. But you have to be patient at the same time.
It’s a wonderful exercise in discipline, and it’s absolutely maddening to experience.