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Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Well folks, I'm not gonna lie to ya...

...although if you let me, I'll tell you long stories that I made up...

Or did I make it up? Was it a sentient alternative universe where a guy drove the pickup truck I always wanted but didn't quite exactly get, and somehow I was chosen to tell the story as it happened? Or did I find the story abandoned and went about discovering it and manipulating it and making it my own? It lived in my head. It was only mine. I shared it, I made the decision to put it out there into the world, and it took on a life of its own. My monster is coming to get you.

It's past my bedtime. I've been a wreck for days. Day or night, dayornight, dayornight, I'm either exhausted on my feet or losing sleep. Why? Because I have written a book. It's the fourth one I've finished, but it's the only one, right now, that is truly worth continuing with. I plan to submit to actual literary agents because I want it to be published and become a real book which people I don't even know will read...and people I know can read it, which means that I'll cringe when I think of people who know me reading the exceptionally awkward sex scenes and the heartbreaking memory scenes, and the hair raising drug scenes, and the slightly surreal sitting in church scenes...while I beg my parents to never ever read it, please...

And it all sits there, a concept, an idea, that came out of my head and became words and sentences and paragraphs and chapters. All of these imaginary friends who are so real to me now are waiting to become real elsewhere. All I have to do



is check over the query letter


and make sure I've done a good job of the synopsis


follow the directions


spell my own name correctly


put the right amount of postage on it


or hit the send button





and send it off



where it's out of my control




and after years of working away to write this monster, then another ten months of rewriting, and obsessing, and struggling with words, THIS IS IT.

It's time.

I think this is where a lot of aspiring writers give up. This is the brick wall, the hard slam of a fast impact. Writing the material that the agent/ publisher/ editor wants is a different skill from making stuff up and calling it fiction. There were things in my head, people, events, and I wrote it down. Now I have to decide on what the next step is and there is no choice, I have to do this, I've been building up my whole life for this and didn't even know it. The book! The book was only part of it! But this! This is heavy! It would be like being the kid who stands by the wall and doesn't ask anybody to dance, because being rejected sucks, but if you just hang and never take the chance, you'll never have to feel the sting of the word NO. Only this isn't that cute thing you had a little crush on. This is what you've always wanted. This is your life. This is your future. What are you gonna do? Sit down and whimper that it was just too hard? Or get up the guts, drag it up from somewhere down below your bellybutton and hold it right there under your ribs and do what's gotta be done. The next step is the big one, stretch those tight little legs and grab the railing, but you better take that damn step or you're going home to sit in the dark and feel sorry for yourself. You want that? NO. I didn't think so.

I would say that I feel like I'm going insane but really I have never had all that far to go, so I guess I'll just say that I'm feeling very disconnected from reality right now. Which reality, well that's a whole other debate.

I have typed circles around myself. I have no idea if there is a point or if I've made any sense. I have mixed the metaphors and mangled cliches. All I know is that I've got 100,000 words that I've practically lived inside of for way too long, and that my own words have made me snort and snicker, and have reduced me to tears. I love them. I hate them. They are not me. They are me. They are mine. I am theirs.

The insides of my eyeballs hurt. I must go lie down in the dark now...

30 comments:

terry said...

congratulations, heidi...! this is HUGE! and hooray for taking the plunge you're taking now.

keeping my fingers crossed for ya..

Lynn Sinclair said...

Finishing the book is the hard part--not too many people get as far as that. Send out the queries and start writing something new.

Best of luck!

Anita said...

Exciting! I'm proud of you... Good luck!

Heidi the Hick said...

Well...I haven't taken the plunge yet...I'm kind of standing on the cliff shivering...

Lynn, you are right. Not too many people get that far. The queries are going out on Friday and yep, the something new is started.

Still feel like my brain is scrambled.

Dr. Medusa said...

Congratulations! Send off the queries and take a little rest.

rain said...

I thought you've been sending queries? Or was that only putting your toe in the water? It's just a matter of time? Let me know if you need advance readers...I don't want to wait!

Anissa said...

Heidi, your passion shines through in every word you write. One of these days someone is going to notice.

Write on, my friend!

Adrienne said...

Congrats!!! That is so friggin exciting and I am so jealous of you right now!!

You can do it, go for it girl, this is so cool!

Uber luck!

CindyDianne said...

Heidi,go to the drawer and find them. You know what I am talking about - the big girl panties! Now put them on!

You can do this! WUHOO!

her indoors said...

oh wow hope its published in time for my birthday, so get on to it please

Heidi the Hick said...

Dr Medusa- YES.

Rain, I did already send 4 queries, all rejected. One to an agent I really hoped would say yes, but in the long run he helped me more by saying no, and the other three are young and I thought I'd have a chance if they're just getting started and building their clientele. Now I know I wasn't really ready. I also know that I need to GET ready and send to all at once. So yeah, I guess that was just dipping my toes in the water! Thanks for offering a read. I would say yes but I have to stop now. It just feels so good to me that you want to read it!

Heidi the Hick said...

Anissa, thank you thank you thank you...

Adrienne, really, jealous! Wow! That means, possibly, that a year from now I could be looking bck on this head rush feeling of making the leap and wanting it again! This is good to know!! (Thank you!)

Cindy, hee hee hee! the big girl panties!!! They make me more brave!

Katy I hope your birthday is next year!

Heidi the Hick said...

You know what? I feel much more balanced this morning. Just to straighten it all out totally, I'm heading out to the barn in a half hour to ride the pretty red mare. That'll fix me up.

You know what else? I'm getting a very surprised reaction from your comments. I didn't expect so many congratulations and cheers! Don't get me wrong- I LOVE it and wow, does it ever make me feel good!

But, I want to say, "Wait! Don't congratulate me yet! It could still get rejected, and even if an agent says yes, that doesn't mean a published will buy it!"

That's REALISTIC but, I'm missing the point. The point is, I GOT THIS FAR.

It's not over, not even close. But I got this far and I can keep going.

(Thanks)

Balloon Pirate said...

I'm so proud of you. And you should be proud of yourself.

yeharr

dilling said...

Woot woot...
have you started another yet?

Heidi the Hick said...

Gahhhhh I have started TWO! I told you I am insane!!!

(technically if you count the sequel to the kid's book that got shelved after 15 rejections, I've started THREE books.)

Trust me, that well ain't gonna run dry any time soon.


Y'know...I am maybe possibly starting to feel slightly just a little bit kind of proud of little ol me...

captain corky said...

Way to go! I'm proud of you for sticking to it.

Nicole said...

BOO!

(That's me sneaking up behind you and scaring you so bad that you jump off that cliff into the great unknown called "Continued Trolling for Literary Representation.")

I can't wait to read the post all about the agent who says "Yes!"

Heidi the Hick said...

aye aye cap'n!

Nicole! There's me flying through the Great Unknown!!!

Yep. I can't wait to hear about the agent who said YES either!

If that makes no grammatical sense, I apologize and use exhaustion as an excuse!

Biddie said...

Well, I am insanely proud of you.
Since we were kids, you have wanted to be writer, and I am so proud of you because you truly are.
The fact that you are published yet is just..a minor detail.
You are a writer, and author, and you rock!

Tod said...

I want to stand in Waterstones and point to your book in the bestseller section and say very loudly to people, "I know her!"

Biddie said...

LOL at Tod. I know that he'll do it!

FOUR DINNERS said...

I'll buy it and read it and like it.

Promise x

Heidi the Hick said...

4D- you sure? There's swearing in it...

Tod, yes, I would love that! Maybe even move it around so everybody sees it!

Minor detail Biddie? Yeah I guess in the grand scheme. In the long run. And I'm in for the long run. You're a writer too y'know. You were born with it.

Redneck Nerdboy! said...

SWEET!

Congrats honey! That's huge!

Heidi the Hick said...

I sure hope it will be!

Heidi the Hick said...

I didn't write a blog today because

a) I went shopping for horse stuff!!! I hate shopping. But this was for horse stuff. I needed some new horse stuff. And I got some good deals.

b) No time to blog because I have to go through my book and query and synopsis with a fine toothed comb, and double check my list of agents, and get it all ready to shove it out of the nest. Fly, little book! Fllllyyyyyyyyy!

Steve Bodio said...

Seriously proud of you Heidi. And you have been way more productive than I have this year too. Good luck!

LadyBronco said...

It is so very tempting to keep revising and keep revising, isn't it?

That way, we never have to hear one single no.

Brava to you, ma'am!

Maria said...

Good for you! I am impressed. I love writing, too, and haven't the faintest clue yet what I would like to do. (Well, correction -- what I would like to do will require lots of research, which means sucking up time that I sadly don't have.) I am rooting for you! Best of luck...

Maria
www.jubileeonearth.com