Thursday, June 30, 2016

IWSG: Getting an Offer...And Saying No


The IWSG is a community where writers can share their fears and insecurities about the writing life. To learn more, check out their website here.


______________________________________________________________

Last month, I finally got that magical yes. I had sent out a query and my manuscript. The publisher returned with: "We would like to publish this." And my first feeling wasn't canons firing confetti, angels singing, and me eating all the cake. 

It was, "Oh no..."

And I had sent the query & my manuscript myself. Imps hadn't queried this publishing company in a fit of late-night mischief. I had. But even when I had sent that query-- and definitely in the months afterward-- I'd had niggling doubts. (and if there's one thing I've learned to do in my time writing, is to listen to my gut.) 

It felt like this wasn't the right book. Not the right book to debut with and not the right book to get an agent with-- which when I was finally, truly honest with myself as I stared at that acceptance email-- was what I really wanted. 

I had thought I would be okay publishing without an agent. But when it came down to it...I couldn't say yes. I want an agent. And I want that agent to be my partner in business (b/c me and contract language and math: yikes).
 
I have decided to give my original dream for my writing career one last chance. I'll finish A LOVE TURNED BITTER, which I feel is the best thing I've written yet, and query agents with it. And maybe if I don't get an offer, I'll go ahead and decide to query small publishers again. Or maybe I won't, and I'll try again w/the agent route for my next planned book (a horse racing one, eeee!) 
I don't know what frame of mind I'll be in over the next few years (heck, or even the next two seconds, heh), so I can't say for sure what I'll decide is best for me as I continue writing.  I just know that at this time and moment, that this offer didn't feel like the right way to go.
 
And I know that sometimes we don't always get our dreams exactly the way we want them. But I have worked HARD for this, and I owe it to myself to stay on the path I'm on, until it feels like the right time to depart and take a different one.
 
Because I know when I have it right (whether that be signing w/an agent, publisher-- large, mid, or small--or self publishing) that there will be cannons firing confetti, angels singing, and all the cake I can eat. 

Until that time, I'll be here, writing. Or not here, but yanno, on my couch. *technicalities*

14 comments:

  1. Good for you for sticking to your dream! I hope you get your confetti fire and singing angels some day soon.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Wow! That is definitely a tough decision to make, but sometimes you have to listen to your gut.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Sometimes the best things for us can be the hardest things for us to actually do. And even though our dreams don't always look the way we imagined they would, they can still be beautiful. :)

    Hang in there, and keep going, keep believing.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Go for the dream! It's hard saying no, so I'm proud of you for doing what is best for your writing career. Good luck! V.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Here's hoping this decision leads to the career you're dreaming of. I've actually heard that having an offer can be a quick and easy way to get an agent. Kind of defies logic, eh?

    ReplyDelete
  6. Well done for following your goals, Leandra. If it didn't feel right to say yes then I think you must have made the right decision for you. Keep going :)

    ReplyDelete
  7. Trust your gut is never bad advice. Hang in there, chiquita. You'll get there.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Congrats on such a huge accomplishment! Good for you. Way to listen to your instincts.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Stick to your gut! Trust your goals! Congratulations for seeing your future and knowing what you truly want! I've no doubt you'll achieve all your goals!

    ReplyDelete
  10. Leandra, that is so incredibly brave of you to turn down something that didn't feel right and wait for something better. I know it's going to pay off. This journey isn't just about getting published (with anything), but doing it well and staying true to yourself. I can't wait to hear how things turn out with your newest book!

    ReplyDelete
  11. Good for you, Leandra. I hope your agent dreams come true soon!

    ReplyDelete
  12. I wish you the best of luck with securing an agent! It's hard letting go of dreams, but some of the hardest things, like slogging through the query trenches yet again, end up being the most worthwhile.

    ReplyDelete
  13. Good for you! I think that acceptance gave you the confidence you need to ask yourself what you really want for your career. It took me 20 years (7 years of that, I wasn't actively seeking a publisher/agent, so don't worry!) and I'm glad I waited. For me, personally, traditional publishing with a big publisher and agent is the best for me...but it varies for each of us.

    ReplyDelete
  14. I'm super happy for you, and really pleased to hear that you're going with your gut on things. If you're not confident in something, it's best to move on (something I wish I'd learned long ago). Anyhow, this is great news no matter what and I'm sure you'll land that perfect agent and deal soon!

    ReplyDelete

I love comments! And appreciate the time it took to leave one, so THANK YOU!!!