Saturday, June 27, 2009

No news is good news

So...obviously the wait to know my fate didn't kill me! But writing 75,000 words in four weekends almost did - won't be doing that again in a hurry, though it is good to know I can be a writing machine when I want to. At least I have another novel to polish at my leisure.

I have an atrocious short term memory which means that when I write I have to jot every single idea or thought thread down in a notebook. I can't make little changes as I write without marking in the change everywhere else it will impact, else I will forget about the change and end up with a very disjointed narrative.

This happened with my first novel. I didn't know how bad my memory was then. I wrote it mostly off the top of my head, knowing the basic story outline but nothing concrete, and hoped the story would work itself out. I changed bits willy nilly as I went along, and made mental notes to go back and 'make sure to write that so-and-so has green shoes' (for eg.) Then forgot about those changes and ended up, four months later, with 60,000 words of pure confusion. It was good confusion, don't get me wrong, I was happy with what I had written, well most of it....actually, about a third of it....but the point is (see there I go again, forgetting what the point is...) it took me a further four years to work it into the book I had thought I wanted. Then I discovered that wasn't the book I wanted, and I rewrote and reorganised it again, wrote another 17,000 words, and this year I was happy with it.

Now I have two methods under my belt and I definitely favour the planned route - it works for my untidy brain - but I like the cut and paste, building an idea from scraps, add and change technique too, so I'll be doing lots of this in my redrafting.

It is now over a week since I heard back from the agent requesting a partial (makes me laugh typing that) and still no more news. How long does it normally take to hear back? And now I am convinced that an ever so polite rejection is on its way.


K. M. Walton said...

Hi Rachel! Thanks for stopping by my blog. Don't you dare think a rejection is coming you way - you gotta believe the exact opposite. Now, if one happens to come your way, keep pushing forward.

One agent has had my book for 11 months, the whole dang book and nothing...from the agent.

The waiting is absolute torture - I feel your pain. Just keep querying and querying...and believing.

Andrea Eames said...

It took anywhere from two weeks to three months for me to hear back from the agents who requested partials. Hope that helps! I sent polite reminders after a month. :)

A xx

Rachel Fenton said...

Thanks for your kind and inspirational words! I am ploughing on regardless and am practicing my fim star 'Oscars' loser face...(you know the one, they so thought they were going to win and then another name gets read out but the camera is on them and the worst fake smile ever gets pasted on) this space!