So, yesterday I got my first request for the full manuscript by an agent.Â Life is good.Â For the next couple of hours, I literally went around singing.
I’d had a partial out with this agent for three weeks, or maybe a month.Â And yesterday when I saw I had a response from her, my heart sank a little bit.Â Ok, I thought, so here it is.
GMail lets you see the first few words of your mail before you open it, and so I immediately saw “I read your sample pages and really enjoyed them.”Â Even as my mouse floated to the mail, I was mentallyÂ filling in the next line: “Unfortunately, I don’t think it’s right for me.”Â So you can imagine my joy when I read, instead, “I would love to see the full manuscript.”
I’m not sure why I jumped to a negative conclusion, except that perhaps I was trying to steel my heart against rejection.Â The fact is, I simultaneously believe both the best and worst about my work.Â I am the best of writers; I am the worst of writers.Â I think this is pretty common, so I don’t let it get me down.Â But at times it’s a bit of a head trip.
I had to rush out to dinner at a friend’s after getting that message, but this morning I copied off a version of my manuscript and double checked the formatting.Â I also had to strip out all my comments; every time Kitty mentions the day, season, or time, I flag it so that if anything changes, I can keep theÂ manuscript consistent.Â Then I ran a virus check and sent my book out into the ether.
After a few hours I got a message back saying that it had been received.Â Which was nice.Â And kind of necessary, because without it I’m sure writers would drive themselves bananas wondering all the questions that flitted through my mind: Should I really send it to the same address I queried?Â What if the person reading the slush isn’t the same person who requested my book?Â What if they think it’s an unsolicited attachment and delete it unseen?Â What if the agency gets sucked into another dimension before my email arrives?
Then they would drive the agents bananas by actually asking these questions.Â Fortunately, that disaster has been averted.