Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Stages of Waiting

Day 1: This is so fantastic! Man, I am on my way now. Literary agent/editor/publishing house will be tripping over themselves to offer representation/publication/words of praise and hero worship.

Day 2-5 I must have missed their email. I'll just go check my in box again...and again and again and

Day 6. Okay, my computer is obviously broken because I am sure they have emailed me...

Day 6. My computer is not broken...

Day 6. Perhaps their computer is broken? I'll go cyber stalk them on twitter/facebook/blogger and if they haven't posted I'll know they are just experiencing technical difficulties and will be back to me shortly.

Day 7. Their computer is fine... maybe it was my query letter...

Day 7. Maybe it was my synopsis...

Day 7. Maybe it was the writing...

Day 7. I suck! I cannot write to save my life! What was I even thinking querying the gods of the literary world? They must be laughing their heads off. I'm going to bedroom and I am never coming out. Hear that world? I.AM.NEVER.COMING.OUT!

Day 8-9. (Still in bed)

Day 10. Well, maybe I'll come out for breakfast, or chocolate... Where is the chocolate in this house?

Day 10- 110 (after millions of emails/phone calls/visits between best writing buddy, husband, BF and copious amounts of chocolate, unidentifiable fried food, the odd glass of wine and and entire tub of ice cream...) well, maybe I am not such a crappy writer. If this agent/publisher/editor/general god of literacy rejects me, I will live... possibly.

Hang on... was that a new email in my in box?

What about you? How do you deal with waiting?


  1. LOL -- I mean, I am NOT laughing at you...
    ... you're a funny girl Tabitha.

  2. Oh, pretty much the way you describe in this post, Tab. I don't wait well at all. Have to distract myself and turn energy to other things. Let go of the result, girfriend, or you'll drive yourself crazy. And remember, even if worst thing happens and they don't choose you, doesn't mean you're not a good writer. You're a great writer. It's just the wrong agent.

  3. I survived dating in my 30s...which was similarly maddening. This is NOTHING compared to waiting for that phone to ring after what I thought was a great first date!

    Before I had an agent, I always submitted to more than one place at a time, and I always had the next project in the works. The more I had out there, the less of a sting I felt when I was rejected. I NEVER put all my eggs in one basket!

  4. I don't wait. I walk straight past the receptionist and burst into their offices. I sit on the guy's (or gal's) desk, light a smoke, exhale through my nose and say okay, buster, yes or no? I haven't got all day.

    I have not been published recently.

  5. Oh dear. All this in two weeks? Sounds like it's time for a new project...not that I'd know...but someday?

  6. Well normally, I write to you, Tab. I go through all the stages of waiting and go a little nuts and then I carry on hehe. I really should be getting good at it by now, but I'm jolly well not! (shh, don't tell)

  7. HaHa! This was so good! You painted a great picture. I am not so gracious when it comes to waiting. Most of the times it drives me nuts. I have not gotten anywhere near this far into the process, but I am hoping for a bright path when the time comes. Blessings and Best wishes with your writing. :o)

  8. So funny!!! I hate your suffering, but I love that I'm not alone in the persistent checking of the email. Want me to email you just to make sure emails are, in fact, getting through?

  9. Not sure my other comment posted...
    Anyway, I was just saying that God really has taught me to send things off and then FORGET ABOUT THEM. It's taken me five years to do this, but finally I am writing to create the best product for God and then the other things roll off my back. It's been a wonderful thing for a person with a racing mind!

    Blessings, dear one.

  10. Laughing hard at this. The waiting is so hard. At least you're making yours go faster by entertaining the rest of us. I know that your waiting will result in dreams come true and more.

  11. Oh this is just plain awesome. Thanks for the laugh.
    ~ Wendy

  12. This is great! You capture the angst so well. Thanks for the laugh.

  13. I hate waiting... I get desperate, I get stressed... I am so punctual, that it's even worse knowing somedy is waiting for me and I can't avoid being late...
    Just thinking about it drives me mad!!!


  14. I thought I was the only one who thinks my computer is broken when I don't an e-mail.

    The next logical answer in the internet is broken.

    Awesome POST.

    Very funny.

  15. Um, just like that. Mostly I refresh my email a lot. I think I've spent about 10 times more time on email than I should have for the last year. It doesn't get better. :)

  16. You have a tremendous sense of humour, loved your post.


  17. I LOVED this. Oh the woes of a writer. Wish you could get paid for the stress.

  18. Waiting is tough. No doubt about it. What I do to conquer it is get busy on my next book. Sounds to simple, but it works. Get involved with another story and forget about what you've sent out. Anyway, that's what I do. :)

  19. I love the picture! On toe shoes no less...shows the pain more than anything. If waiting by the phone ever made it ring, I would still have a landline and be shriveled skeleton propped beside it. Wait no more Tabitha. Let them...find you! Worthy of discovery!!!

  20. Lamott addresses very similar fears in Bird by Bird (which I'm near certain you've read?!).

    Loved this, it made me smile the whole way through. I'm glad I'm not the only one who comes unglued waiting!! (My last writerly wait lasted 4 months and even then, I had to nudge/email the editors and now, still waiting. Only more hopeful now...)

  21. The more you experience the pain of it (and rejection), the more you are prepared to experience more pain of it.

  22. I'm the same - the longer I wait, the more I freak out!

  23. This is PERFECT! Love it. And haven't we all been there? In fact we ARE there right now. I spent all day yesterday refreshing my e-mail for a message that never came. Ah, the glamorous life of a writer...

  24. That's hilarious.

    And oh Tabitha, what a coincidence. I was just going to ask you about something related to writing and there it was, a blog post about the stages of publishing.

    But yes, you're the only experienced and understanding person I can talk to about this really; the fact is, I really don't know what to do about my writing.

    You see, because it's a bit unusual and not really the kind of thing expected by teenagers, it gets rejected by every competition I ever enter it into, so I never get any experience, and consequently feel like there really is no place for my writing at all.

    Is there always a place in the literary world for something, if you look hard enough? Because I know I would despise myself forever if I changed my writing to be the sort of thing that people wanted to read. Even if it was popular, I would just hate myself.

    Sorry for rambling, I just have nobody else to talk to about this.

  25. Sarah, I have emailed you honey. There is a place for your beautiful words. hang in there girl. :)

  26. Oh gosh Tabitha, thank you so much. I can't fully express my gratitude, you really have been the most supportive and helpful person in relation to my writing all the way along. I appreciate and admire you so much.

    I will reply to your e-mail very shortly; I'm going to church in a few minutes and I want to give all my attention to the reply, but thank you so, so much, I feel I will never be able to repay you.


  27. I am so not a good waiter. I get all stressed out and freaked and I lose weight and lose sleep... and... after several weeks I just relax and try to block it from my mind.

  28. Indeed. Waiting opens the door to all of our insecurities, angst, and self doubts. However, it also serves to keep us focused and hopeful. Enjoyed reading this!