03 June 2009

The Writers Submission Process

One of my favorite writers recently attended at a meet-the-agents day in NYC where she pitched her latest writing project to a slew of agents. She returned home with a headache and a long list of interested agents. Now that the excitement and nervous energy is abated, she's left with burn-out and overwhelm.

Following is my sympathetic response to her experience.

...as for your burn-out. I'm not surprised. All that interfacing and the nervous energy from all the writers around you. Congratulations for taking time to rest and take care of yourself.

Once you are rested comes the tedium of sending out all the different packets --not the easiest thing for any of us, but especially difficult for right-brained, highly creative types such as yourself. You just have to put your head down and do it, one submission at a time.

The submission process is a brutal business fraught with more rejection that one person should have to endure. However, it's a part of the life we have chosen and one we have to toughen up for. 

There are agents who will love what you've written -- they are the ones you're looking for. 

Rejections from the others have to be brushed off without the sting allowed to pierce your body. These agents are those who either have just signed on a new writer and don't want to take on another, promised to clear their desk today and send out a sweeping stack of form rejection letters. Others are in a bad mood and take it out on the stacks of awaiting submissions. And the list goes on... 

There are as many reasons for rejections as there are agents and writers, Many, many, many of the rejections have absolutely nothing to do with your project at all.