Saturday, May 19, 2012

The Big Wait

NCW Member,  Maggie Goins will be taking the place of Laney and blogging for The Writing Bug every other Friday. Welcome Maggie!

Writers write, of course, but we also wait. We wait a lot, especially if we’re among the Great Unpublished submitting our work to agents and editors. It’s what we must do. No other choice here.

After a while, the Big Wait becomes a part of us. It’s on our mind, an annoying companion always there, one who whispers things like, “See that guy over there in line? The one with the red face and steam coming out of his ears? No way he could be a writer. He’d never survive me. How’re you holding up?”

The Big Wait can be tough. Really, we’re waiting to find out if our submission is right for someone’s list, if they love it and think it will sell, if working with us on the project will be worth their time and effort. What if the response is none of the above? Unfortunately, that’s most often the case. But we keep trying because our writing success is that important to us. It. Just. Is.

So, how do we writers keep from: giving up, melting down, throwing our computers out the window, punching out the next person who asks if we’ve heard yet? Not sure, but we manage. Most of the time. Since we all have to deal with the Big Wait, let’s think about ways to deal with it. Wait, here’s some now:


  • Start a new project that isn’t writing related. 
  •  Get caught up on all the life stuff we left hanging when this writing project became all there was. 
  • Spend time with someone who will be able to talk us down off the I-can’t-do-this-anymore ledge. 
  •  Try not to think about it. I know. Sorry. 
  •  Research a topic we’d love to write a story or an article about. 
  • Read. Always a good decision. 
  • Make a list of Big Wait busters and share it with waiting writers everywhere.

5 comments:

Dean K Miller said...

I've nearly gotten to the point that I don't think about what I am waiting on (four submissions). No longer am I losing sleep, but every now and then I wonder if/when I'll hear something.

So while I wait, I work on my novel, cruise submission requests and contests, think about a revision or two...and then wait some more.

If I'm still chugged out about it all, well, there's always chocolate and ice cream!

Patricia Stoltey said...

Maggie, congratulations on becoming a contributor to The Writing Bug. You picked a great topic for your first post here.

The Big Wait periods are when I do a lot of reading for fun and sometimes even bake something tasty. A pan of pineapple bread pudding or a batch of sour cream sugar cookies is much better than edging onto that scary ledge. :D

Dianne K. Salerni said...

Big Waits continue to occur no matter where you are in the process. I think I learned a valuable lesson last summer when a very discouraging Big Wait came to a different end than I expected -- but a good one, nonetheless. I think I learned that every single writer has to go through this, and you don't always get what you want, when you want it, in the order you wanted it, but if you love writing enough -- you'll get what you need to keep going.

Kay Theodoratus said...

Glad to see your blogging here.

Must say, though, that even writers with sales end up waiting. Waiting makes up the shrubs along the writing road.

pam2spicy said...

Maggie...SWEET! What a nice way to begin a Monday morning. It is helpful to know there are others out there, writing...and waiting.
Pam

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