Friday, November 19, 2010

Beginning the next step

Originally this blog was created to chronicle the highs and lows of my MA in Writing for Young People. Well, I received my manuscript grade earlier this week (some of you may have seen the *bouncing* on Twitter). I've officially passed. With distinction! *happy dance*

The even bigger surprise? I had been gearing up for another few weeks (or months) of revision on Project Sparkle. I was cautiously optimistic, hoping to start submitting my manuscript to agents in January. Well, my tutor told me she thought it was almost ready to go! As soon as I fixed one small plot point... there is *always* something.

But now I'm hoping to start submitting in the next week or two!

This past summer, I said I'd continue to blog about my submission process. However, more recently I've realized that's not such a good idea.

What if I send Project Sparkle out to six agents and five reject me? And then I post that information on the blog? If the sixth agent is kind of interested and googles me, I can't imagine she would be too impressed to hear five of her colleagues thought I was worth passing on.

Plus I think it might be kind of bad form.

But throughout this year, I've learned so much from sharing my thoughts and process with all of you. And I've been so encouraged by your support and friendship. So I will continue to blog about the submission process generally. I'll talk about why I'm sending Project Sparkle out to agents first instead of editors. I'll talk about what agents do. I'll explain how the submission process works. And how scary and uncertain and competitive the whole thing is.

So I hope you'll stick around. It could be a long ride. But I'm looking forward to sharing it with you.


  1. Distinction! Well done! And best of luck with the adventures to come..

  2. I've heard that it's always best to vaguely talk about the submission process and not mention any specifics or badmouth anyone. I acknowledged that I had started querying agents and then started talking about life and the next book I was working on.

    That said, I've found it difficult to talk about the huge revision I'm almost finished with, and I'm not sure why (which is why there's huge gaps in my blog now :D). I'm thinking it might be best to talk about without any mentions of agents or R&Rs and talk about why I think it was a very good thing for the book, and me, to rip it apart and spend six months putting it back together. (Six months. Oh god. *feels faint again*) Because I think more people need to talk about revision, especially revisions that take longer than a few weeks.

    Or, you know, I could just be crazy. ;)

  3. Also, because I'm a dope and ill: CONGRATULATIONS on your distinction! All your hard work paid off! :D

  4. Woooohoooo!

    Congratulations, Anne! Brilliant news. Best of luck taking the next step.

  5. Wow, thanks so much Keren, Helen, and Sharon! So nice to share my excitement with my writer friends!

    It's suck a tricky area, isn't it Helen? On the one hand, I think it's really important for people to know that sometimes (often!) books need to be ripped apart and rewritten so they'll work. And the more we talk about it, the better we'll get about being honest about how hard and time consuming life is, and hopefully better able to just get on with the work. But on the flip side, it's a little scary writing about your own work, and worrying what people will think if you say you've spent the past 6 months ripping apart a book. Probably a very fine line there, and different for each blogger.

  6. By the way, Helen, thanks for the congrats and hope you feel better! I really DO feel like the hard work and the mark equaled each other. For once in my life. A great feeling of competence--at least for the next few hours! =)

  7. I think you're wise not to tell the world about your rejections. Never mind that after each rejection, your manuscript gets a little stronger and better -- nobody wants to think they're your second or third choice, or getting something that everyone else has turned their nose up at.

    But definitely save up all those rejection stories, then once you're well published and have had a good Kirkus review, you can trot them all out and make all those struggling fledgling authors feel great.

  8. Congrats, Anne! I've enjoyed reading about your journey and look forward to hearing about how the submission process goes for you.

    I'm working on a revision myself and will hopefully be submitting to agents in a few weeks. I'll keep my fingers crossed for good news for both of us!

  9. How exciting! Another leg of the writing journey begins.

    I definitely think you should use discretion when talking about the submission process. But you can still share tidbits from your journey, you'd be surprised how many writers will find it useful.

    Good luck! :)

  10. Yay, congrats! Good luck with the submission process. I hope it's nice and speedy. :-)

  11. Huge congrats, and good luck subbing!! Cheering you on!

  12. Thanks so much everyone for your support!

    Mary: I love your spirit, remembering that each rejection makes the work better. Plus saving them all up for after my good Kirkus review! Fab idea! =) After all, I have learned so much from more experienced authors who have shared their struggles.

    KT: Crossing my fingers right now for both of us! Thanks!

    Karen: I think that's what I'm aiming for, tidbits. We'll see how it works out. But you're right, I've found so many others tidbits useful.

    Anna and Joanna: Thanks so much! Speed sounds good (amazing!), but I'm also being a little pessimistic and preparing for a long ride!

  13. It has been fun--and encouraging and informative--sharing your MA journey, Anne. I'm looking forward to The Rest of the Story.

  14. Aw, thanks so much for that encouragement, Anne. Guess I'll keep posting!

  15. Yeah- to it being ready way ahead of schedule- is there something else in the "hopper" also to start anew?

  16. Thanks, Julia! Yes, there is something else in the hopper, but it's pretty rough at the moment. Hopefully it will be a good, frustrating distraction during the submission process!

  17. Oh congratulations Anne! A distinction no less!

    I'm sure you're wise to be cautious about saying too much that's too specific online, but don't disappear will you - I love your blog.

  18. Congratulations! That is wonderful news.

    I wish you great success with the submission process and look forward to your continued posts.

  19. Thanks Anna and Fictionforge! So kind. I promise I'm not disappearing for now!


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