Recovering From A Writing Testes Kick

Thank you to the most amazingly supportive blog commenters! Seriously, you guys were a huge part in my recovery.

It took me two days to regroup. The first few hours I was inconsolable. I cried on and off for 7 hours. The next few were devoted to hopelessness. Wallowing in the pointlessness of all that I do.

A breakup. That’s what this felt like. It took me two days to realize the agent dumped me. While I thought we were moving in together, she was just having fun.

I’ve had lots of rejection in my query wars. Had dozens of fulls requests end in rejection. I’ve learned to handle it.

But this time someone asked for the full, gave me revision notes, then dumped me.

That had never happened before.

And I wasn’t prepared for it.

I thought if I made it this far, probability was on my side.

But I forgot.

Life doesn’t work that way.

At least not for me.

But it’s exhausting to be depressed.

Luckily, 48 hours later, anger came calling. Tidal waves of rage. Floods of frustration. A desire to prove this agent wrong.

I sent out submissions to editors and queried new agents.

I took action. And it felt AMAZING. To not be beaten down anymore.

But it was just part of my natural progression.

Rejection hurts. It makes you doubt yourself. It paralyzes you. It sucks all hope out of you.

But that passes. And then anger fills the void. It drives you to act. To move forward again.

I believe in this book. I believe in me. And that’s enough for now.

And I’ll keep writing and querying and submitting until I win this query war.

 

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52 Responses to Recovering From A Writing Testes Kick

  1. I’m so glad to hear this Kourtney! You go girl and kick some querying ass! 🙂

  2. Running from Hell with El says:

    So glad you’re back on the horse!! Good on ya!

  3. Writing can be most rewarding and equally most frustrating. I have three half novels in my desk. I wonder at times if I don’t finish them precisely because then I would be compelled to try to publish them and end up in the back of the closet with a large bag of Cheetos. Keep swinging. As with most things in life, or so I’m told, those things that are the hardest to achieve are the most cherished when acquired. Probably a lot of, well you know, but it sounds good.

    • I am happiest when writing and at my most miserable when querying. I love the time away from querying but it’s a necessary evil if I want to see my book published. Though it does make self publishing sound better and better. I do agree with you there. The hardest won victories are the most remembered. 🙂

  4. jmmcdowell says:

    When I try querying again, this time with Death Out of Time, your posts will help pick me up when things don’t go as I’d like. You’ve got a fantastic attitude, and the comparison to getting back on the horse is a good one. I used to do that literally. I need to remember to suck it up and do it figuratively, too. 🙂

    There are so many new publishing opportunities in today’s world. And I believe that is a good thing. While a “traditional” deal still holds appeal for me, I’m glad there are alternatives if that doesn’t work.

    The most important requirement for success in any publishing format is a quality book. And it sounds like 99 percent of the feedback you’ve received from the “gatekeepers” is positive. So you’ve got that box ticked. 🙂 What I would hate to see is you (or other writers) put the manuscript in a drawer if you couldn’t get an agent or press to take you on. I see more agents talking about finding their new clients in the indie-realm. Success there can lead to a traditional deal. Although being independently successful has led some popular writers to turn down the big presses and their “advances,” so to speak…. 😉

    You rock, Kourtney! And you are a great inspiration to many of us!

    • Thanks JM. When the bad moments happen, I feel like it’s important to share them. Because then when the good stuff does happen, it means so much more. 🙂 I’m not sure that traditional publishing will work for this book. I’ve queried a lot of agents and so the only thing left is to query a few more and move on to publishers (small and mid size). I’ll also look more into self publishing so that if I do it, I do it right–wonderful prose, killer cover, proper formatting, official reviews, etc. I am a bit of a control freak so being in control of the whole process holds some allure for me. 😉

      And the third book, my crit partner thinks is way easier to categorize and sell. So maybe that’s the one that sells after revisions. All I can do is try. And reach my braking point. And then try again. 🙂

      Aw, you inspire me too! I love your blog and I’ll be cheering you on when query time comes.

  5. Carrie Rubin says:

    And win it you will. Of that I have no doubt. 🙂

    • Hope so! Honestly, you inspired me to check out smaller presses. Because you have a great book, a great cover and it’s out there for people to read. That’s amazing! 🙂

      • Carrie Rubin says:

        Thanks, Kourtney. A lot of marketing responsibility, though, but I hope it’s at least a foot in the door. Of course, I’ll still try for an agent on the next one. 🙂

        • I feel like I’ve really tried the agent route on this book. I’ve hit the triple digits in queries. I’ll send a couple dozen more out, but it’s getting clear that there may not be an agent for me. 😉 Yeah, the marketing stuff sounds tough which is why I’ve been trying the agent route for so long. But I just want people to hear my words. I feel like a singer without a venue or an audience.

          • Carrie Rubin says:

            With as polished as your book is, I suspect you’d easily land a small press. If the book does reasonably well, it will help with any future agent hunting, I’m sure. Good luck with whatever you decide. 🙂

          • Thanks Carrie. I’m back to waiting on queries. I’ll give it 6 months, then I’ll have to decide whether to self-pub or keep trying for a small press or agent. And thanks! Seeing what you’ve done makes me want to join the ranks of the published by a small press. 😉

  6. zelmare says:

    yay!!!! Go Kourtney! 😀

  7. 4amWriter says:

    I’m glad to see you’re back on the front lines. I think you’re smart to contact small presses about this book. Agents definitely have their work cut out for them, because they have the big guys to answer to. It does seem to be all about bestsellers with lit agents, rather than just a well-written book that’s a great read. I don’t blame you for not enjoying the querying route. It ain’t fun at all. But you’re right, we have to do it if we want to be published traditionally.

    Keep fighting. 🙂

    • The funny thing is, if an agent really could predict the bestsellers, um, wouldn’t they be a kagillionaire? Every best seller was a bit of a surprise (unless it was a later book in a series). Mine may only sell 1000 copies or 100,000. But either way my words would be out there. And that is starting to matter most of all to me. I do still want to be traditionally published, but the idea of self-pubbing is definitely gaining ground with me.

      Either way, I’ll keep trying until there is a book in my hand. 🙂

      Thanks Kathryn!

  8. winsomebella says:

    It is great to hear the strength in your voice, you amazing you!

  9. EllaDee says:

    It’s possible you’ve summed the stupidity of it up in your comment “Agents seem to like the writing and the premise, but think the book might not be a bestseller”… I can’t remember the last time I read a current best seller. Maybe a few years on I do, I know I’m not the norm, but on your behalf I’m frustrated at the impossibility of that thinking. Write some trite best selling drivel and you’ll have agents galore, or write something good – your story, and you have to justify. As they say, publish and be damned… You’ve done well to recover 🙂

    • I’m still scratching my head at how they “know” what will be a bestseller. I mean there may be certain things editors are asking for and are easier to sell, but how can you sense a book will be a bestseller and be right 100% of the time? And how are you not rich if you allegedly have these capabilities? I’m starting to laugh at it all. It’s that or cry. And I prefer hiding in humor. 🙂

  10. Cat Forsley says:

    Hooray Hooray Hooray xxx
    “it’s exhausting to be depressed ….” geesh that’s wise and oooooh soooooooooooo true ……
    I am so happy – negative emotions drain all the energy out of us and take their toll ———-
    YOU got uppppppp pretty fast honey 🙂 and i am soooooooooooooooooo happy for you 🙂
    watch what happens next with all this good energy going on – you watch 🙂
    it’s gonna be amazing – It already IS 🙂
    xxx
    don’t stop believin !
    I won’t ever xxxxxx
    Love You
    xxxx
    Cat

  11. berry says:

    Keep going don’t give up on your dream. You will make it. Know that for fact. Glad ur back and fighting.

  12. WOO HOO! Congrats for your fierce and prompt comeback, Kourtney. Also like breakups, you’ll no doubt come out (and keep growing) stronger than ever before.

    • Thanks August. I kinda thank Amazon for that. Losing the ABNA contest really rocked me and I wallowed far too long. I didn’t want that happening again. I promised myself a wallow but only as long as absolutely necessary to move on. Luckily giving myself permission moved me on to anger and action much faster. 🙂

  13. Sorry to hear about your rejection, but I’m glad you got your story back out on submission! I really loved the excerpt you had in the Amazon contest. Good luck!

  14. writlady says:

    good for you Kourtney. there’s no point in wallowing – they win when we do that. but this will put her in her place. and you can remind her that she turned you down when you’re a mega success

    • Thanks Louise. Staying paralyzed wasn’t working for me. I feel so much better having new possibilities out there. LOL. I’m kinda okay with not being pubbed by a big publisher or being a mega success. It would be cool, but I’ve kinda re-adjusted my view of success. I think a small press and selling 1000 copies would be success right now. 😉

  15. Good on you for raging away and then pressing on! I wave my angry virtual fist at that agent who teased you. And then send a big hug to you and know everything for the best, and the agent you are meant to “move in together” with, will come along when the time is just right, and you will be there to receive the invitation because of your persistence and hard work (and talent, which goes without saying!)
    Wishing you all the very best, Kourtney, as you move along in your journey to the NYT bestseller list 🙂

    • Thanks Anne. Your words made me smile. I’m starting to think this book may go to a small press or be self-pubbed. Maybe my next one will catch an agent. It’s hard to stay positive but at least I realize there are other options open to me if the agent option doesn’t happen.

      Appreciate all your support and well wishes. Imagine when that day comes. You can say you knew me way back when. And of course cut to the front of the line at any book signing. 🙂

  16. berry says:

    Dont give up
    If u believe in your work keep pitching it. It might catch someone eye.

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