Originally posted on January 16, 2011 at 6:10 PM
I’ll tell you my very least favorite part of being a writer. It’s not rejections. It’s not waiting for rejections. It’s not the work. It isn’t even being called “a housewife.” It’s submissions.
I. Hate. Submissions.
I work the equivalent of a full-time job most weeks, in being a writer. I write for 3-4 hours a day (unless it’s a really good, fast day) 7 days a week. That’s about 25 hours a week. And then I spend about 2 hours on submissions each day. That’s 14 hours a week. That doesn’t even take into account editing and formatting and blogging and record-keeping. Throw in my 3 hours of critique groups each week, and hell, I’m working over-time.
I’m telling you all this not to complain (okay, a little to complain), but mostly to let you know. When people find out I’m a writer (which is not, I reiterate, the same as being a “stay at home wife”;), they often ask me, “So what do you do all day?” They don’t mean to be rude; they’re genuinely curious. I can understand that. So I’m explaining.
About half of my available working hours are dedicated solely to writing. The other half go to necessary, boring, mind-numbing crap. Hey, it’s true.
At this exact moment in time, here’s how my completed, unpublished works break down:
• 2 novel manuscripts- 2 sent out to a total of 14 agents queried, 1 partial in review
• 2 poetry manuscripts- 1 sent out to 1 poetry contest
• 2 short stories- 2 sent out to 2 publishers
• 8 flash/micro fiction pieces- 6 sent out to a total of 7 publishers
• 289 individual poems- 11 sent out to 4 publishers
As you can see, that’s over 300 works finished and always waiting to be sent and re-sent for publication/representation. That’s not even including all of my WIPs (2 more novels, 1 more book of poetry, and near-constant short fiction and poems). It’s easy to imagine how once I started becoming more prolific than my submissions it became almost impossible to catch up. But it makes no sense to me to stop writing to have time to submit. Writing is the whole point. Publication is desirable, but time-consuming.
The worst part of it all? That it never ends. If I got each of these accepted at the first place I submitted to, I’d be golden. But that’s not the way it works. I get rejections in the mail/email, and as if that wasn’t bad enough on its own, it means I have to send that same piece back out again. It takes at least an hour, usually more, for me to narrow down, research, and choose the perfect venue to send a poem or story. Agents are even harder. So when I get a “no” back, it means that piece goes back on my list. Not so fun.
If I were really, really rich, I would hire someone to handle all of my submissions. That’d be baller. Anyone interested in working for cookies?Share this: