So, I completed my 30 submissions in 30 days challenge and all I have to say is PHEW! What a challenge. It was like running a marathon after only ever having trotted down the block to your favorite coffee shop. Here are the results I've seen so far. And here is the takeaway: how to get rejected in 5 easy steps.
I’ve been having a tough time keeping up with my one submission per day and, quite frankly, not doing this perfectly makes me want to give up. It’s an easy excuse—this giving up because I’m not doing it “perfectly”—and one that I think I shall I ignore as though it’s a cranky little kid who needs to get her ass into bed for nap time.
Today I submitted a short story called Therapeutic Madness, about a woman who quietly slides into a spiritual meltdown, which I illustrate with ever-changing grammatical perspectives (i.e. first person, second person, third person).
Someone asked me how I figure out where to submit my short stories and novels. I told them about my crystal ball and added that for $29.99 I could provide them with a list of submission targets. A writer has got to be creative about earning a living.
Today (day 10) in addition to submitting to the CBC short fiction contest, I sent one of my novels, Rumors of Happiness, to literary agent Sandy Harding at Spencerhill Associates. I guess I should be thankful for my involuntary celibacy these days, because at least it’s freeing up my time for all these submissions.
So I received my first rejection yesterday. Upstreet Magazine declined my short story Sally’s Pigeons. And no, it’s not an avian resource guide. According to my plan, that’s one down, 199 to go—if I’m in the same league as Louis L’Amour, 139 if I’m side-by-side with Jack Canfield, or 21 years, 12 months, and 24 days if I compare myself to Gertrude Stein.
So today was another manuscript-submission day. I sent my novel Highland Games to a publisher that does not require an agent: Avon Romance.
Here’s what the novel is about:
Highland Games is about a workaholic woman who is doctor-ordered to take a relaxing vacation where she meets an ever-so-sexy local constable who interferes with her pursuit of boredom.
Here’s the story behind this novel:
Day two of my 30 queries for the month of October game/challenge/torture device, and it’s going pretty well. Of course, day two of anything usually goes pretty well. Relationships, jobs, exercise, kidnappings. It’s day 29 that separates the winners from the people who want to poke their own eyes out with a stick.
Today was short story submission day...
Rejection is a pretty scary thing. Or even if it's not scary, it's damn frustrating. Every single time I send out a query letter to a publisher, literary agent, magazine or potential boyfriend (kidding. I don't send men query letters; I get my assistant to do that for me) that little bubble of hope and optimism and excitement rises to the surface and I think: "Maybe this time...."
And then I receive...