Monday, December 16, 2013

All’s Quiet on the Industry Front! By Linda S. Glaz

How do you keep from being discouraged when it’s all quiet on the industry front?
I remember the first Thanksgiving when my agent was sending out my work. I just knew that if I received a contract at Thanksgiving, I would really have something to be thankful for. What a great way to spend the day. Eating turkey and thinking about my book. No Thanksgiving contract. Then I thought…if only I got a contract for Christmas. I’d be so happy. That would be the greatest gift ever. If only it came on Christmas Eve, then I’d have the best Christmas. A contract to start the New Year! Wow! That would be the best beginning to any new year that I could imagine. Alas, I ate turkey without getting ‘the call’ and I managed to enjoy Christmas without one word on any of my books. What? Really?
Now, my agent had explained that not a lot happens between Thanksgiving and New Years. But my hope is never on sabbatical if truth be told. Once the year ended, I was exhausted. I had gone through the holidays, which I love, and I had spent way too much time…hoping for something to happen, and in the end, only managed to miss out on a wonderful holiday. Now, did I completely ignore Christmas and so on? No, but I had my mind wrapped around all of the wrong things. And I fear I wasn’t alone. On FB this year, I notice a lot of author friends doing the same thing. They don’t seem to be able to enjoy the season because of all the hope they’re pouring into their desire to be recognized as an author. Validated by the much sought after offer.
Being authors does not define who we are.
Getting a contract does not bring about true happiness.
            Our hope at this time of the year should be wrapped around the Child who made the holiday possible, not an agent, editor, or 3-book deal.

We need to take this time to relax, not worry about the what ifs that could happen in our lives, but the truths that make life worth living. Make some fudge, have a snowball fight with our children, pop some corn and watch a Christmas movie. Don’t attach our hopes to what might happen, but rather to what we can make happen at this wonderful time of the year!


Rick Barry said...

All appropriate observations, Linda. Thanks for placing the focus where it should be.

However, you got me thinking.... After editors return to work in January, there must be a backlog of submissions. Are they tempted to decline proposals with less consideration than usual to clean out those inboxes? Maybe we'll never know. ;)

Kevin Parsons said...

What other industry almost completely shuts down between Thanksgiving and Christmas? Do they catch up on other business, or do they not work?

Terry Burns said...

Actually they aren't entirely shut down, Kevin. It's just that decisions are hard to come by since holiday schedules make it difficult to get committees and pub boards together. That's what gets put off until the first of the year. It doesn't mean that editors and agents aren't working. This is a time when a lot of proposals and manuscripts are read and when inboxes are cleared out. This is a time when submissions that can easily be rejected are handled and ones that might be a possibility are set aside to be addressed when people can get together for meetings again. I'm getting a lot of responses from people clearing out those inboxes.

Rick Barry said...

Terry, your comment is helpful and encouraging!

Linda Glaz said...

Terry, thanks so much! I knew something was missing here and you explained that so very well. Thank you, thank you!

Davalyn Spencer said...

This might also be a good time to write a Christmas story.