Thursday, April 12, 2007

I feel like I've been running a 10k marathon, and so far I'm not sure whether I'm ahead or behind.

But last night was one of those banner moments, one of those moments you remember for the rest of your life--because I finished the synopsis for my book!

Huh, you're not impressed? I'm ecstatic. I feel like I just passed the last leg of the marathon, now I'm into my seventh km, and the home stretch is upon me.

I can remember the agony of starting the book. When you first set your cushy running shoes on that path and push forward. It's hard going, but then you get into a bit of a zone, and the pavement starts zooming by. Until you get a stitch in your side, or in this case, WRITER'S BLOCK. Oh, the horror of writer's block. It might take a while, and you may have to sit out of the race for a few moments to catch your breath, but then you can start moving again, and that is a good feeling too, knowing that you've conquered the block.

When the book was actually written, I had a glass of wine that day. But oddly enough, despite feeling a little bit of a glow, I wasn't jumping up and down ecstatic. Perhaps it was because I knew that I had only reached the half-way point in my trek. Getting the book ready for publishing was going to take a lot more time, and I'd be huffing and puffing pretty hard by the end of it.

Now that editing is well on its way, I had diverted my attention to the matter of publishing materials. If a person wants to send a manuscript to a publisher for review, there are a lot of RULES. I couldn't believe all the rules. You need to query first, which means you send a short letter of introduction. And depending on the publishing company, they will either respond to request a synopsis of your book, along with a copy of the first few chapters, or they will not. Sometimes, a publisher wants the chapters with your query, sometimes they want a synopsis that is five pages, sometimes eight. Then of course, some won't even look at your query unless it is submitted by an agent.

Oh My God, I thought. How do I get an agent?

We'll just leave that one alone for now.

But finally, the query letters are written, the synopsis is drafted, and this is when I start doing the football happy dance--oh wait, my analogy was running, right? Oh well, never mind.