Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Dear Writer...

Now Playing -
Putting On The Ritz by Taco

Life -  

Hey, I got an email from Jonny Porkpie, thanking me for my review of his book, The Corpse Wore Pasties! He even has it posted on his website.  (I'm on the right side, below a description of the book) Rock and roll, baby!

Sadly, that was the highlight of the day yesterday, I got a pretty good chunk of friendly but discouraging emails from the stores I hope to transfer to. The essential situation is that my company is in the middle of cutting a manager in each store, adding instead a half-powered position of shift leader. That means that for me to get an opening and transfer to a new store, they have to lose one manager, promote this shift leader, then lose a second manager in order to accommodate me. That's not out of the question, but it does make things much harder than it would have seven months ago.

All this makes it even more important that I achieve some measure of success with my...

Writing - 

Just before bed yesterday afternoon, the mail arrived, within the pile of mildly junk related mail, I found an envelope addressed to myself, written in my own handwriting. Odd, I thought. I don't recall writing myself a letter... Then I noticed the postmark, New York City. Blast, and to think, fifteen seconds ago, I was quite sleepy and ready for bed, not wide awake and filled with anticipation and dread!

Now, to be quite frank and straightforward, as I've promised myself and my three readers I would, I never expected anything but a rejection letter. In fact, it's reached the point that a  rejection letter would actually be best for Smith and Moonstone Bay. I've designed it as a series, with adventures digging for treasure, hunting monsters and tracking Sasquatch. A contest with a generic publishing contract and no agent involvement would probably mean the end of those adventures, or the possibility of them being continued in a different form. I was willing to take the chance though, because I needed the deadline to prompt me to write the book and if, by some rare chance I won, it would be a springboard into other books.

Dear Writer, the letter read, followed by a brief little paragraph that included words like We are sorry and we wish you every success. Then they stated that my manuscript was returned herewith, most regretfully. Now, that could have been the problem, all that was in the envelope beside the letter was an invite to enter in the 2010 contest and the cover sheet to my novel.... Man, I hope that isn't all I sent!  I can only assume, judging by the existence of a clause in the rules stating that MS would NOT be returned, that this form letter is just an old format. Silly Delacorte!

Anyway, to make a long story short (Too late!) I did not win the eighteenth annual Delacorte Yearling Contest. I did receive my first official rejection letter though, and that makes me feel like an Official Aspiring Author (TM)

Last night, when I staggered from bed and headed off to work, I think I discovered the right place to start The Whispering Ferns. It still needs some work, but I'm really very excited about the idea of finishing my new edits and starting to query for agents!  Wish me luck people! And time to get the writing done in the first place. The holidays, work, having my mom and brother move in, trying to transfer and life in general is not very conducive to effective writing habits.

The Last Sentence - 

The man was almost as wide as he was tall, like a great Kodiak bear, escaped from the circus and running free in the Seattle Airport.

From - "The Whispering Ferns" (WIP)


Kristopher and Crew said...

Hmm, I just noticed that I apparently rhyme in my thoughts when I'm tired. That explains a lot, actually....

randymeiss said...

You have my good luck wishes. Please keep writing. I'm sure it was truly a difficult decision for the judges for it to have taken so long.

Go get some sleep.

Anna said...

Congrats on the first rejection! Yes it might be an odd thing to celebrate, but make sure to file it away so that one day, when your tenth book has been published, you can look back at it and laugh. :-)

Blee Bonn said...

It's a first step and you have to take that first step - tack it up and use it to inspire you forward. You will do it!!!

Steve at Random said...

Instead of Whispering Ferns, how about Whispering Sagebrush...turn it into a western set in, I don't know, North Dakota. Also, we've got jobs out here...lot's of them and they pay well, too. The oil fields in western North Dakota are booming. Here it's called "Rockin' the Bakken." Forget about Wallgreen's and think evergreens...North Dakota, it's legendary. As for the idiots in New York...other than the Yankees, what have they produced lately? Nothing.

The Grows said...

So even though you didn't win do i still get to read the rest of it. I have been dying to reed the rest of it since you sent me that first little bit. I want to finish it. Please please please please please!!!!

Mary Witzl said...

Rejections are, to begin with, anyway, what this business of writing is all about. Sad but true. The first ones piss you off, then the next batch discourages you, then you experience a whole medley of emotions from disgust to despair to indifference to dismay -- and so on. And finally, you get a letter that isn't a rejection. And you begin to see what all those rejections were for in the first place. To make the tiny little successes feel like the Nobel prize.

Here's to some of those good letters for you!

Kristopher and Crew said...

Randy - Thanks! I'll get some rest eventually...

Anna - I was surprisingly more excited about the letter than I thought Id' be. Since submitting, I've thought of a lot of ways to make it stronger.

Blee Bon - Thanks!

Steve - As always, you crack me up!

Britteny - I promise, as soon as I have my new opening written, I'll get you a copy!

Mary - That is a great comment, I'll save that for the batch to come! Thanks!