Blog · Writing

I’m Not a Writer.

Four years ago I went to a writing conference. I learned that I was doing lots of things wrong when it came to my writing, but mostly when it came to querying agents.

I thought spell check was the same as editing.

I thought 120,000 words for a YA romance was totally fine.

You get the picture.

I met a lot of great people and ate a very overpriced salad.

We were all there for the same reason:  To get an agent.

The last day of the conference they had a speed-dating session with the agents. It cost extra. I paid the extra. I went to a class to learn how to pitch my story. I stayed up most of the night perfecting the pitch. I came up with something amazing. Much more amazing than the queries I’d sent out. I went to the session feeling very confident. Hoping for the best, preparing for the worst.

I pitched six agents. Here were my results:

Agent One:  Seemed marginally interested in my story. Told me to query her with a synopsis and the first three chapters. I was like WTF! Didn’t I just pitch the synopsis? Ok, whatever. I was just happy she didn’t reject me to my face since she was one of the first agents to reject my query via email.

Agent Two:  She said she LOVED the pitch and the fact that it was a contemporary romance, not fantasy. She asked me to send her the first three chapters and to make sure I noted it was requested material.  This made me really happy. Especially, because I had queried this agent via email a year earlier and received a rejection.

Agent Three: Same as two. Loved the pitch. Asked for the first one hundred pages. She was also one of the agents that rejected me the previous summer.

Agent Four:  She said I had a great pitch and referred me to Agent Three. She didn’t rep YA.

Agent Five:  Said she liked the idea of the story, but only if it was really dark. (Side note: Because of this comment I actually made the story dark. Dark was the element I was missing, so thanks Agent Five) She asked for the first three chapters. But more out of pity. She liked me more than the story.

Agent Six: Said the story seemed very relatable and asked for an official query, synopsis, and first three chapters.  Again, this is an agent that rejected this story a few months earlier.

I left the conference with so much hope and confidence that I would get signed. The agents all seemed to like me, like my book. I was on my way!  The next day I crashed my car. It was the universe’s way of balancing out my life. Suddenly, the path I was on didn’t seem like it was the right one.

I ended up sending an unedited version of Thizz to Agent Three. She had the most success in my genre and I thought we would work well together. She sent back a rejection within five days. I was sad.

I spent the next year rewriting. Then I went back to the conference. The theme of the weekend was that self-publishing would kill my chances of being a writer. I learned that agents don’t want authors that write multiple genres. They want pretty packages they can sell. That is what they bought from me last year. I sold them on my book because I am a good sales person. Not a good writer.

I did some soul searching and thought about the other agents that requested chapters. Could they sell my book better than me? What if I want to write an adult romance or a fantasy, is that allowed?

The answer was no.

I don’t fit into a box. I’m so outside the box. I fucking stomp on the box.

I shoved the names and information of all those agents into a drawer. I will never query them anything I write. Because I’m not writing for them, I write for me. I want to decide the name of my book, what the cover will look like. I’ll take all responsibilites for typos. What I won’t do is compromise who I am.

When it comes down to it. I’m not a writer. I’m an artist.

5 thoughts on “I’m Not a Writer.

  1. Interesting thoughts. I’ve recently gone through some disappointment myself in the writing process. I’ve been writing my original story on Wattpad (writing website) for over a year now, and by the year mark, I was hoping to get a fairly good amount of reads. However, that didn’t happen. Now I wonder if my story is even worth trying to query 😦

    Like

    1. Your issue may be getting readers to find you. When I am present social media or go out and gorilla market over a weekend, my numbers spike. When I’m home writing, not posting on Facebook or blog sites, my charts flatline. It may not be the writing as much as it is the marketing. As far as querying, I hate rejection in any form. Although my initial queries were horrible, I knew that I didn’t want to answer to anyone. I don’t want someone to dictate what my story, or my style should be. So, self-publishing fit my needs. Remember, even the world’s most famous authors were rejected. 100’s of times. Over many years. So, it may have nothing to do with your writing ability, as much as it is your querying ability.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. That could be true. When I was on Wattpad, posting in the threads, I did have readers find me. However, the payoff wasn’t worth it. I’ll try to expand myself to different social media sites such as Twitter and Instagram.

        Hmm, I’ve never thought about that before. That it could be the marketing and not so much the writing. I admire how you want to take control of your writing and don’t want anyone to change your stories. I wish you the best with self-publishing. Keep staying true to yourself =)

        Liked by 1 person

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