Why is it so hard?

I see the light.

I see the light.

This weekend was devoted to finishing edits to my novel. A novel that I started maybe ten years ago. One that I spent the last six years or so trying to raise from the muck. I had wanted to write this story for such a long time, but I never seemed able to start it, or when I did, to get it quite right. I had plenty of encouragement from some editor friends, and from my own book-loving pals. I thought I was there, but my first agent was lukewarm about it. We parted ways. I continued working, then sent it out to a few agents. Several asked for partials and fulls. One asked for edits. I was game. The edits took me several months but when I returned them, I got a polite no. I did another round of changes, sent queries again, and got similar responses. The third time was the charm, though by then I felt completely burned out. In all, I had 21 rejections. Then I found Marie, who believed as I did that this story was something special.

But she too had some changes in mind.

I got her notes on December 12th, but didn’t start working until January. Today, I finished typing up the last edits.

It’s not over yet. I still need to do a final read and there will certainly be some tweaking. But I see the light at the end of the tunnel. And boy am I glad to see it.

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11 thoughts on “Why is it so hard?

  1. timkeen40 says:

    Keep it going. No matter what we say, we live to see our work in the libraries of others or open in someone’s lap on a runway as the plane takes off.

    Tim

  2. Elisabeth Kinsey says:

    OMG – you are an inspiration. I feel like I’ve been on this same road, except I’m old and tired from it. It’s taken its toll. Thanks for this light. Living through others isn’t so bad, right?

  3. debatterman says:

    A tunnel is the perfect image for the way we work . . . Sometimes we’re just to close to see what’s missing. Sometimes we know we’ve gotten it just right — as far as the story we intended to tell — but agents are looking at it from a particular marketing perspective. I do my best to see the subjective response for what it is. I listen hardest to the criticism that resonates. And I take heart in knowing that I’m not alone in my trials and tribulations.

  4. injaynesworld says:

    You have my complete admiration for (a) even writing a novel and (b) sticking with it this long. I hear stories all the time of books and movies that went through similar incarnations and took years to finally “see the light.” Keep believing, my friend. I’m looking forward to reading it.

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