Waiting Games

Three weeks ago today I submitted a query, synopsis, and the first twenty pages of Until Thanksgiving to a publisher. Three days later, I received a response to my query: a request from the publisher for the full manuscript. I sent the manuscript within thirty minutes and have been dancing off the ceiling ever since.

Waiting is not my forte. Years ago I learned two ways to eat up waiting time. Sleep, or stay busy. Long-term sleeping really isn’t an option. Since I couldn’t sleep past seven if my life depended on it, I’ve been trying to stay busy.

Some would spend more time running and going to the gym. Not me. I still try to do something for thirty to sixty minutes every day, but it’s been a few weeks since I’ve done much more than that. Me and healthy lifestyle are working through our differences. We’re committed to staying together, but for now, we’re slowing things down a little.

Mostly I’ve been writing. It relaxes me. And more important, time flies as I get absorbed into whatever I’m writing.

This blog has benefited tremendously from my need to keep busy. I added five new pages: About Me, My Blog, My Books, My Interests, and My Work. I’ve also written a new post almost every day this month.

I’ve kept a handwritten journal since 1979. Entries appear whenever I feel like it, sometimes every few days and sometimes not for several months. Unless something unusual is going on, I usually add a page or so once or twice a month. In the last three weeks, I’ve filled dozens of pages with my thoughts on every imaginable topic.

Like that’s not enough, I outlined my next book, After Christmas Eve. Yesterday I submitted the outline to my writers group. They’ll read it over the next week or so and share their feedback with me at our meeting on June 23. I try not to tinker with something I’ve submitted for the other writers to read until after I’ve heard their feedback. Nobody likes to hear, “Oh I changed that” when they offer a suggestion. I know I don’t–makes me feel like I’ve wasted my time reading the submission.

I’m anxious to start writing my second novel but have decided to wait until after our meeting. I know the other writers will have lots of suggestions. Because it’s the most important part, I expect a lot of ideas for improving the beginning of the story. Revising an outline is about a thousand times easier than changing a finished chapter, so I’ll wait.

The writing frenzy has carried over to my day job, too. I’ve knocked half a dozen minor writing projects off my massive to-do list. I’ve even put together a new to-do list–a day-long project I only take on three or four times a year to keep up with all the different projects I’m involved with. I’d be lost without it and my paper calendar, though I’m now trying out an online calendar.

I hear the turnaround time for reviewing a manuscript is six to eight weeks. Three down, three to five to go. Of course, I could hear something tomorrow–or maybe not for two more months or even longer. I just don’t know.

That’s why I’m playing waiting games, here in…

My Glass House

4 responses to “Waiting Games”

  1. Gods I know, I’m on day 56 of that same experience. “love the first chapter, send us more” and then crickets. Sigh. The waiting is the worst.