Thursday, April 19, 2012

P is for Patience

Do I even need to explain this one?

There is no end to the waiting in the publishing game.  I don't care if you're self-published, traditionally published, or just putting things up on a display site.  The fact is, once you put your baby out into the world, you're going to spend a lot of time waiting to hear from other people on it.  That's the nature of writing.  We create, but we cannot create the audience.

At every stage of the game, you will be waiting for something.  In one of my son's favorite Dr. Seuss books, Oh the Places You'll Go, the great man himself wrote all about waiting:

You can get so confused
that you'll start in to race
down long wiggled roads at a break-necking pace
and grind on for miles across weirdish wild space,
headed, I fear, toward a most useless place. 
The Waiting Place... 
...for people just waiting. 
Waiting for a train to go
or a bus to come, or a plane to go
or the mail to come, or the rain to go
or the phone to ring, or the snow to snow
or waiting around for a Yes or a No
or waiting for their hair to grow.
Everyone is just waiting. 
Waiting for the fish to bite
or waiting for wind to fly a kite
or waiting around for Friday night
or waiting, perhaps, for their Uncle Jake
or a pot to boil, or a Better Break
or a string of pearls, or a pair of pants
or a wig with curls, or Another Chance.
Everyone is just waiting. 
That's not for you! 
Somehow you'll escape
all that waiting and staying.
You'll find the bright places
where Boom Bands are playing.
With banner flip-flapping,
once more you'll ride high!
Ready for anything under the sky.
Ready because you're that kind of a guy!

So, how do you cope with all that waiting?  I am not the first person to say this, nor will I be the last.  It will sound simplistic if you haven't heard it before, but I am telling you, it is the one and only thing under your control:


Don't wait around for answers to your queries, don't think about what people will think of what you've already written, or what you'll write in the future.  Just...


Do it.  Do it now.  No excuses.

What are you still doing here?  Go WRITE IT ALREADY!!!


Beth said...

But when I feel all angsty from the stress of WAITING my next book tends to suck to the point it can only be re-written. LOL.

Liz Czukas said...

That's the next step, Beth! First you write the crappy first draft--then the fun begins!