I got thinking about this lately after talking to a couple of my authors about revisions, rejections and the like.
Writing is great. I love writing and I love working with writers, but making the shift to professional writing takes more than simply time, money and the manuscripts. It takes a passion and a conviction to stick to it through all of the good and the bad. Not to keep drilling this into you, but the subjective side of things means that there will be times when things just don’t go as planned. There will be days that the manuscript just can’t be worked on due to other projects such as marketing, editing and the likes. There will be times when writing just doesn’t work because you run into a road block. But that is the reason why you have to love it.
With all of the frustrations and distractions, you will find great reward in seeing that manuscript finally finished. You simply have to love it.
A lot of people ask me why I do the agent thing? There is a ton of reading. Many of the manuscripts are painful to get through. There is the travel to the different chapters to talk and listen to pitches. And of course, there is the issue of dealing with rejections. Remember that as an agent, I get to deal with it two times. The first with the editor and then the second as I call the writer. So why? Because I love it. I love working with new writers and seeing the growth they make.
So, where am I going to with this? Simply to ask yourself, before you start sending those manuscripts out to editors and agents, “Do you love it?” (Ohh, I sounded like Aiden Quinn from LEGENDS OF THE FALL). I’m not talking about just the writing, I’m talking about the whole thing. If you can’t say yes with a lot of enthusiasm, then just keep writing, but wait before you send things out.
Scott C. Eagan