COMMUNITY LEARNING HUB: ONLINE MODULES

6.6 WHILE YOU WAIT…

You’ve pressed send…now what?

The best advice – whether you follow it or like it or not – is to start something new.

Press send and forget

Yes, we hate it, too. We want to losing stare at that inbox, awaiting a reply the same day, with a request for a full…then when you update the other agents, they all suddenly read it and within 24 hours, they have all stayed up all night to read your manuscript and are offering representation.

But that won’t happen. (Well, probably not). More likely you’ll not hear anything for a while. Agents, as we all know are uber busy, and reading manuscripts is only a tiny part of their job, often done at weekends, or late in the evening, or on commutes.

You might wait 4 weeks, or 8, or hear nothing at all for months.

So while you wait, do yourself the very biggest favour you can, and SEND AND FORGET. Sorry, that’s a big ask – you’ve spent a year, maybe more, writing, rewriting, editing and polishing that manuscript. You’ve poured your soul into it, and has spent every waking (and dreaming) moment of the last 12 months thinking about.

Starting something new

We are humans, and don’t just have an off switch for this unfortunately. So perhaps a more balanced approach would be to keep it ticking along in the back of your mind, but to fill and consume the forefront of your consciousness.

You know that Shiny New Thing, that brilliant idea you’ve had, that other book that been germinating in your head and you’ve put off writing it for months? NOW is the time to unleash that. Let it slowly slide into your mind, let it saturate and consume that old book, let it make you forget that you’re on submission to agents…

Taking a break from writing

Okay, okay, that didn’t work did it? You are still obsessing, and still refreshing. Try stepping away from writing altogether. Get away from your phone or computer. Take that wilderness trip to the far end of Norway, that you’ve always dreamt about. Take up lightsaber fencing classes (yes, that’s a thing!) or just take some time with the family or friends or a good book.

Be kind to yourself

Whatever you do, be kind to yourself, and remember that submitting a book to an agent is very brave and incredible step that almost all people who claim to ‘have a book in them’ never actually achieve.

We are very proud of you for reaching this stage, and whatever happens, remember one thing:

You will need to write another book at some stage – why not make it now, while you wait?