Sunday, September 23, 2007

The Other Side...

When I started this blog, one of my main goals was to have a real-time recording of my thoughts and process as I worked towards my ten year plan.* Part of my reasoning was that I really enjoy going back and reading author blogs from before they were published/agented. As I've said before, it is so inspiring to read about their process, their doubts, their lives from before. Especially knowing what the after is like.

Another part of the reasoning is that I have a terrible memory and I thought it might be fun to walk down memory lane. And in fact, the other night I did just that. I went back to reminisce about when I got the idea for WIP and what it was like to work on it. I'm so happy with the end result of WIP that it's easy to forget about the doubts along the way (they were there, folks) and that's what I wanted a memory of.

I also went back and reminisced about the stress of my agent hunt -- the over thinking, the agony. It makes me laugh now, and it's hard to remember just how stressful that whole thing was. How much trouble and time it took to put together every submission package -- hours!! And in the end it all worked!!

It's so strange and awesome to suddenly be on the other side of all of that. Just the other day, a guest agent came to one of the loops I subscribe to. I was thrilled and eagerly read all of her posts, sopping up all the information. I was half-way through before I realized "I have an agent (!!). I'm past this stage of 'what are you looking for in a query letter.'" Oh my God I have an agent!!

I think that's when it really hit home what getting an agent really meant. That I'd hit this goal, accomplished this milestone. All of the sudden, whether to personalize your query letters is no longer a worry of mine. Now I can look back at some of my random fears (incorrectly formatting sample pages in an email) and realize that most of those worries are useless. That it really does come down to the story -- to the pages themselves and not how they're formatted. But that's so much easier said from the comfort of being represented :)

And the best and funniest part of all, is that I was on a message board recently when someone came on and stressed "how do I format an email query?!" and I was able to respond the same way so many people responded to me. "Relax, here's how I did it, relax some more, it will all be ok."

The thing is, that's useful advice for every step of your career. So now, instead of stressing about what's next, I'm leaving that in my wonderful and accomplished agent's hands and I'm starting in on my next book. That is, after all, what this is all about :)

* JP and I have a ten year plan to be able to support ourselves with our writing in 10 years, which would be by the beginning of 2016. Wow, that's the first time I've ever figured out the exact year and that feels like SO FAR away!!


Spy Scribbler said...

Very cool! It's easy to forget to look back and realize how much we once wanted to be where we are.

Congratulations on getting there!

Celeste said...

good fer you!

Erica Ridley said...

instead of stressing about what's next, I'm leaving that in my wonderful and accomplished agent's hands and I'm starting in on my next book.

1) Please explain to me how to stop my stress

2) Squeeee! Can't wait to hear more about the next book!!! =)

Lenora Bell said...

Congratulations, Carrie. It's so thrilling that all your hard work and stress paid off in such a wonderful way. It gives me hope.

Carrie Ryan said...

Erica - it's all about the fish-slapping, and you know who to go to for that :)

Thanks everyone else! It's been awesome so far!