Even Pro Authors Get the Blues
by Caitlin Kittredge
ME: I will write a YA book about fairies set in Victorian England! It will be the Best Thing Ever!
MY LOVELY AGENT: Um, you do realize there are no actual Young Adults in this novel?
ME: DRAT. Okay, I will rework it so that a teenage girl TIME TRAVELS to Victorian England.
MLA: This partial book you have delivered me doesn't make a whole lot of sense. Also, your time travel science is totally inconsistent. I have gone cross-eyed.
ME: [Assorted swearing.] Okay, forget Victorian England. It is a silly place. I'm going to write about a teenage Grim Reaper, and she will be sarcastic and dark and bad-ass, and have an awesome Goth sidekick who reanimates dead Pomeranians!
MLA: This is not making me cross-eyed, but I feel you could do better. I get the distinct sense you pounded a case of Diet Coke and wrote this in a weekend.
ME: HOW DOES SHE ALWAYS KNOW. Okay, fine, I'm just going to give up, cry, eat a box of Hostess cupcakes, and then work on this silly half-formed idea about a steampunk world inhabited by evil faeries and Lovecraftian monsters.
MLA: I LOVE IT. Can you write me 50 pages and an outline?
ME: BWAH? But also, OKAY! [Writes frantically, pulling a plot and supporting cast out of thin air because thinking that far ahead is for writers who don't like going insane.]
BOOK: [Sells to Random House.]
ME: CRAZY TIMES.
All of this is to illustrate one simple point—don't give up. I still deal with rejection, and I've published nine books. It doesn't stop when you get published, it just reaches a different level—you can talk to your agent, hash things out, etc. But if you're struggling with being on submission, or just finishing a first novel, press forward. You can do it. It takes a lot of resilience and persistence to make it in this business, but if you know that going in, you're ahead of the game.
We have a copy of The Iron Thorn for a lucky winner. Enter by 5/4/2011 to win.
Want to read more from Caitlin Kittredge? Jump on her blog tour:
Cleverly Inked—Tuesday, April 26th
Kiss the Book—Thursday, April 28th