Q: Do you know what can you see when you get to the top of a mountain?
A: Other mountains.
Today I received the email I’ve been waiting for – a wonderful literary agent would like to represent me. Not only that, she would love to represent me. She stayed up until the early hours reading my unsolicited submission, she fell in love with my MC, she sees a clear placing for the novel…it’s really all very very good.
So I thought those of you who know how much I’ve wanted this, and those still on the same journey would want to know how it felt to me?
0) Disappointment – I saw the email appear in my inbox just 3 days after I sent the full manuscript and I thought ‘Oh no, it’s not a phone call it’s an email, that will be a no.’ And then I read it and…
1) Excitement and Joy – How wonderful it is to hear a literary agent say things like this: “simply one of the best contemporary debuts I have read in a long, long time…I stayed reading until beyond midnight yesterday because….. well, because it is THAT good. I can think of a number of editors of literary lists who will be blown away by it… Please say you will sign up and then I can get working on your behalf!”
2) Nervousness at the first call with my new agent – Unnecessary.
3) Questions for the agent – Where do you see it fitting in the market? What sort of publishers? How many edits?
and then, once I said, “Yes please!”…
4) So where are these new mountains? – Edits, submissions to publishers, edits from publishers, publication, writing the next novel…
A friend once told me that each time he has achieved something that he has been striving for (like climbing a mountain) he enjoys the view momentarily and then he sees it for what it is – the other mountains waiting to be climbed. I think I’m like that too. Once I reach the top of a mountain (writing, redrafting, redrafting, submitting) I catch my breath and I’m already looking at the next few peaks.