Try, Try Again

Try, Try Again

While many of you out there are enjoying spring break, I thought I’d take a little, tiny break from baking and tell you more about my love of writing.  For those of you who are new to the blog (Welcome!), you might want to check out parts one, two, and three in the story behind my writing.  Writing is my true passion.  I want to make a career out of writing novels and screenplays and hope my dreams come true soon.  I do also love to bake, but I really started this blog to get more experience writing and build my audience.

After I finished my third novel, Mom and I both edited it, as best as we can, not being professional editors, and then I began the process of writing a query letter once again.  This is not as easy as it sounds, with each prospective agent having different requirements for both the letter and how it is submitted.  Since I’m assuming they get tons of these letters, that’s the only reasonable explanation for crappy form rejection letters that tell me how many they get, and how sorry they are to be sending a form letter, and how my project isn’t the right fit, I’m also going to assume ones that don’t meet the long list of criteria get deleted or thrown in the trash without a second thought.  My letter is not going to be that letter.

Try, Try Again

The query letter also only allows for a few paragraphs to sell not only your book but also yourself.  How would you convince someone you are worth a second look?  Or put a nearly 70,000 word novel into one paragraph?  You need a moment or two or forever to think about it, don’t you?

Well, I did it.  What choice did I have?  But apparently I didn’t do it well enough as emails and snail mail letters began coming back, saying in the nicest words possible that I was rejected.  Again.  The worst ones of course, are those that don’t respond at all.  Did they get it?  I’ll never know for sure.  One letter said that if you submitted a work of fiction (I did and probably always will write fiction), the good news is that the issue probably wasn’t your finished piece or idea, just the letter.  Yes, awesome news, since I’d rewritten the letter nine hundred times and no longer had any ideas of how to make it better. 

I’d like to revisit that novel, perhaps sometime soon, but for the time being, I set it aside.  It sounds like giving up.  Sometimes it feels like giving up.  However, it’s not really.  It’s cutting your losses, moving onto a new idea, one that maybe I can sell better, or maybe will catch an agent’s eye.  You see I was only temporarily giving up on one particular novel, but never my dream, never the end goal.  Because my first novel kept calling my name.

Try, Try Again

It meant starting from scratch again with the base idea.  That was okay, writing is probably my favorite thing in the whole world to do.  I love watching TV and movies and shopping and baking and exercising, but I don’t think anything makes me as happy as writing.  Plus, I figured in the day and age of hot tween, teen, and young adult books, a story about a girl who just doesn’t fit in at high school, in life, could resonate with everyone at one time or another in their life.  So, maybe it would be the one.  The big break.  The bestseller.  So back to the computer screen I went . . .

By the way, I posted pictures of the eggs I colored Sunday for Easter because I didn’t have any other pictures to post and a blog post without pictures looks like a lot of stuff to read.

Try, Try Again

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Comments

  1. Susan says:

    I truly admire you! I’ve always wanted to write, too. I just read an incredible book called “The Bloodletter’s Daughter” by Laura Lafferty that she said took 27 years to get published! She ended up publishing with Amazon. I wish you all the best & will keep an eye out for your name in print!

    • Laura says:

      Thank you so much, Susan! I will have to check out The Bloodletter’s Daughter. I just try to keep working at it and know that good things will happen.

  2. We each of us make our own dreams come true. Your “book” will eventually happen if you keep at it and don’t become discouraged. I’m cheering for you. Blessings…Mary

  3. Keep up that positive attitude, and always remember how many rejections J.K. Rowling received before her novel was picked up. Many times in this world you just have to be in the right place at the right time, and it might not have anything to do with how you wrote your letter or your final novel. Rejection sucks (I get disappointed just getting rejected from foodgawker! Ha.) but it just gives you power and energy to keep going. Good luck!

    • Laura says:

      Thank you so much, Katy! I definitely take comfort in knowing many famous authors have been rejected over and over. And I agree that it’s all about right place at the right time. Who doesn’t get bummed being constantly rejected by Foodgawker and Tastespotting?!?

  4. Keep at it girl! I know what it’s like to send stuff out there, unsure if it’s exactly what they want, and getting heap tons of rejection. Some day you will get someone who says “yes”! 🙂

  5. I’ve been writing a little something for fun for a while, and I sometimes think about trying to publish it one day. Then I think about all of the rejection and heartache and then I’m not so sure 🙂 Definitely keep trying!

    • Laura says:

      Thanks, Jennifer! It is very tough dealing with all the rejection, but the hope that all it takes is one person is enough to keep all of us going.

  6. Debbie Eccard says:

    There are tons of people who would just be happy to say they wrote a book let alone three. I think it is a good is a great idea to revisit your first novel as you have learned so much more about writing. The idea is really good so now you can improve on the story and characters. I feel a rewrite success coming!

    • Laura says:

      I see your point that it is an accomplishment to have written so much, but in my opinion, if I’ve done all this work and it is my passion and I’m never successful at it, then I’ve failed. I know it will happen one day soon though!

  7. Laura, continuing to do something you love is not failing. Sometimes you need to find pleasure in the act of doing.
    They say a person that is successful in whatever they do, be it sports, or art or music, must spend at least 10,000 hours at it before they often achieve what is called overnight success. Keep your skills strong, take a class to keep current, by all means stick with it. My goodness-you have written a book! How many people can say that?

    • Laura says:

      Thank you so much for your advice and support, Abbe! I really appreciate it. I am hearing the 10,000 hours more and more, so perhaps it is true. It can’t be too long until I’m there . . . I hope 😉

  8. Jessica says:

    I really admire the fact that you have started a blog in order to better hone your skills and to build an audience. It really takes alot of forethought and drive to do something like that. Don’t give up, all of the pieces will eventually fall into place as they should. Maybe the novel just was not ready for that point in time, you were right to set it aside for a bit – there is no harm in that. You are doing great! Just keep plugging along 🙂

    • Laura says:

      I knew I had to do something, so I thought the blog would help. I’m still hoping it will! Thank you so much for all your kind words, Jessica!

  9. Arturo says:

    10,000 hours and then the real work begins, keep it up and you’ll find the voice the sounds the truest and most clear and no one will be able to deny it.

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