So Close and Yet
Writing is a difficult thing. You strip your thoughts free, ripped from their safe and comfortable places, and arrange them just so—naked and vulnerable. I’m no genius. I’m no Hemingway. But I try hard. I outline, I write, and I edit. I draft a proposal. I research potential agents and publishers. I find one. I click send. They write back—like they did this morning—“we were impressed with the quality of your narrative writing. However, we feel that we cannot publish the book as you’ve outlined it to us.” It’s a crushing blow. The email came from an editor at an international publishing house. It’s both validating and frustrating. It’s not a mark on his or her record; the editor’s just doing his or her job. That’s what is so fucking hard about writing. You say something personal, transparent, maybe even profound, and the powers that be slap your mouth shut. What can I do? Keep writing, I guess. And make changes. The editor continued, “[We are] in no way commit…to your project—but we would be happy to look at a fresh proposal if you are prepared to make these significant changes.” Alright, back to the drawing board. I’ll do this thing, because I enjoy this thing. And I’ll deal with the rejection as it comes.