Linda is off on her writing trip, which means I'm home on my writing "trip." I'm going to try to get Freedy Filkins closer to the end of his Adventure.
Meanwhile, I got back a rejection from the first agent I tried. A one sentence, she didn't "connect with" the sample chapters.
Now, I was trying to be prepared. I knew the odds weren't great, still it hurts. Thing was, I wasn't going to check the email while I was hot and heavy writing. Either a rejection or an acceptance would derail me. For how long, I don't know. How resilient am I?
I was lucky the first time, all those years ago -- got accepted right away, got an agent right away. After that the agent shielded me from the day to day rejections.
So I'm going to have to develop a thicker hide.
How long to recover? Hours, days, weeks? Never mind, keep writing.
I couldn't ignore the emails because I wanted the names of more agents.
Yesterday I called Mike Richardson, my old boss who is now the owner of Dark Horse, and had a nice long chat with him. It was nice -- I think he really remembers his Bend days fondly. I asked him how long the store was on Greenwood and he said, one and half years. Wow. It seemed like years and years.
He also pinpointed the founding of Pegasus Books as January, 1980, so that means we're coming up on 33 years anniversary.
So that means the Pegasus has been downtown for 31 years -- which is longer than I remembered.
That fits the timeline of me working for Mike's brother and then me managing the store before I bought it.
Anyway, it was a fun conversation.
At the end, I asked if he'd refer me to a "few agents." So having done that, I couldn't ignore my emails.
I'm going to keep a list of agents I've tried, so I don't duplicate. Then send each book proposal off to 10 of 15 agents.
If I keep getting rejected, then I just need to try harder on the next book.
I'm thinking right now that my best bet is to go with my more traditional fantasy -- The Reluctant Wizard. I'm planning to turn my earlier book, Sometimes a Dragon into the same setting, so they become part of a series. Put my professional efforts into that.
Put my more experimental and obviously questionable material like Nearly Human and Freedy Filkins, online. They are "high concept" in the sense that they can be described as a single sentence and they are the kind of thing I can see people trying out of curiosity. I had fun writing them, but neither one fit anything out there that I'm aware of -- especially Freedy. Nearly Human was the book I used to get back into the writing, and I think is bit of misfire, much as I like lots of what's there.
I told myself going in that this was going to be hard, and as I sank deeper into this writing, I knew it was going to get harder. I could've blown off rejection easier if I'd just been doing this as a lark. The more serious I get, the more exposed I will be. But if I'm really serious about getting published again, I'm going to need to expect lots of rejection before someone takes me on.
I just have to keep writing and trying harder. At the end of the day, I'll know I've tried.
1 week ago