Thursday, February 28, 2013

Walking in Oblivion

The most terrifying moments for an author are undoubtedly when the first readers of a manuscript have finished the story and are prepared to tell you what they think. No matter how many times you may think to yourself that you are doing good work during the course of writing a manuscript, there is always that nagging fear that the words truly suck and you've only been tricking yourself into believing otherwise due to laziness. This is what makes the first response from another reader so critical, and so nerve wracking. Like it or not, the truth will be revealed.

When I recently finished the novel I'd been working on for the past several months, I felt good about it. I knew I'd worked hard, that I'd supported the characters actions and that the story had depth and meaning, yet I still worried about the possible criticisms that might come my way. I made some daring narrative choices with this book, which even though I was happy with, I knew they were a bit of gamble. But I committed to them. A writer needs to commit to the story he or she feels they want to tell.

Yesterday I heard back from my agent. I must confess to a level of dread upon seeing the email in my inbox, but as it turns out, my anxiety was all for nothing. The response was overwhelmingly positive. As always, there are a few places for improvement, but they are minor and I was able to breathe a huge sigh of relief. There is nothing quite like the feeling of knowing the choices you've made and the work you've put in has paid off in some way. Hopefully you will all be able to read this story in near future.