I have a book coming out.
Sometimes I forget that. Well, not forget – it’s kind of hard to forget. I think it’s mostly just because it’s a slow process. I finished my first round of revisions a few weeks ago and sent them back to the editor, and I just got notes back for the second round. I’m pretty sure they say nuh-uh, this totally doesn’t work and you need to add dancing geese in this scene.
They don’t actually say that.
The bigger thing was that even after the contract was signed, even after I got those first notes and started seeing blue and red in my sleep, I didn’t feel much different than I did before.
Selling my first book did not flip some switch that magically opens all the closed doors in the publishing world. I’m still chipping away at one project or another. Since Christmas, I’ve submitted three different projects to five different publishers. I still have to play the waiting game like everyone else, even though one of those projects was submitted to my current editor, and another was submitted to an editor who knows me, albeit not very well. And I gotta say, the wait on one of those projects is killing me.
Don’t get me wrong; I was thrilled when I sold One Night in Buenos Aires. But I was surprised, as well. It was a first for me in a few ways – first book I’d actually set out to write as a novella, first book I’d written, revised, revised again, and revised again, then submitted, in a little over a month, first book I’d submitted that hadn’t been seen by my critique partners. The novelty’s worn off, though, under the revisions and contract negotiations and the waiting. There’s still a lot of waiting. I am not my editor’s only author (though I could probably keep him busy on my own for a year or more, with all the stuff I’ve got piled up) and there are still some final details to firm up. So. Waiting.
You could sum up what I’ve learned about publishing so far in a sentence: it’s a lot of waiting.
I knew there could be quite a bit of time from submission to publication (Jessica Clare recently said in an interview with Smart Bitches she signed her first contract in 2007 and was told the book would be released in 2008. It didn’t end up being released until the end of 2009). I also knew that from the time my contract was signed to the expected publication date would only be a few months (like, six). Which led me to assume I’d be pretty busy those months getting shit ready.
I can’t complain. Having that downtime meant I could polish and submit those other three projects. And I probably should be doing other stuff, like designing a website and brainstorming publicity options. But that’s a entirely different topic, and it’s pretty tempting to just let it ride, because if even one of those other submissions is acquired, I’m going to see a decrease in that downtime. Yes, even with the waiting.
I’ll just go back to waiting quietly in my corner over here…