I did my research, found a literary agent that seems perfectly delightful, and sent her my very first query (to an agent, at least). I haven’t slept since. I fear this is the first step in what promises to be a long, brutal, soul-sucking journey to self-publishing.
As soon as I clicked “Send” I was looking for a way to recall the email. No luck. The missile left the silo. Now I’m riddled with self-doubt and second guesses.
I think the query letter was okay, however, it’s hard to find reliable information on what works best. For instance, I read that it’s best if the first paragraph shows I’ve done my homework, that I know precisely who I’m querying, and why. On the other hand, I saw a different article that said I should just get right to selling the book and anything less is amateurish. I don’t want to appear to be an amateur, even if that’s precisely what I am. Ultimately, I settled on a half-assed one liner — enough to let her know I’ve got my eye on her, but not enough to make her think I’m a stalker.
I typed the synopsis with one hand. The other hand was holding a razor blade to my own throat. My manuscript is over three hundred pages long. That’s how long it takes to tell this particular story. If I could tell it in one page or less, I would have done that in the first place.
As for the requested biography, why did I bother to mention my works-in-progress? Like she cares. And why did I mention this blog? This blog averages two views per day. What am I crazy? This isn’t a platform, it’s a monument to my utter lack of readership!
Now I have a bruise on my forehead from banging it with the palm of my hand going, “Stupid, stupid, stupid.”
Oh well. I guess there are worse things than getting a form rejection. My manuscript could be returned to me wrapped around a pipe bomb, for instance, or accompanying a box of condoms and the words “DON’T EVER PROCREATE” scrawled across the title page.
But beneath the self-loathing, emotional chaos, and general panic, one thing keeps me going: Hope.
It’s nice to stand at the intersection of dreams and reality every once in a while.
Even if there’s a good chance I’ll get dragged a hundred yards under reality’s left tire.