On 2022

I’ve had a book on submission with a publisher for eleven months now. That’s a long time – by no means a record, but a long time nevertheless. In the meantime I’ve got halfway through the (second) sequel, as well as doing a hell of a lot of commercial editing, so I’ve hardly been sitting on my hands. But I’ve not been submitting. I have been waiting.

This is how 2022 is going to go for me. This book is either going to be accepted for publication or I’ll be rejected. If the latter I’ll be very disappointed but, y’know, life and all that. I’ll then have to consider whether I go on trying to place it commercially – all the hells themselves won’t know where, mind – or if I’m going to take all the lessons learnt from New Gods and self-publish.

If it’s accepted – well, it probably won’t be published before 2023 and there’s all the rounds of editation it’ll need to go through, but I’ll know what I’m doing. I can get on with first-drafting Breathing Fire, and editing Our Kind of Bastard, and I’ll keep the hope of being some kind of ‘success’ alive.

Of course I’ll do all that writing and editing anyway because it is, at the end of the day, what I do.

2022 is to be determined, for me, by a binary choice made by someone else. This is not a good way to be and I don’t advocate it – which is, of course, why I,’m trying to carry on as if that’s not happening. I am still keeping my eyes open for other submission opportunities – I’m not beholden to anyone – but I’ve already been rejected by all agents and, for this trilogy, this seems like my last chance.

So how optimistic am I about the year to come? I have no idea. Not very? Somewhat? I always try to expect rejection because that way it doesn’t hurt as much when it happens. I guess, though, this time I am afraid because I can’t see a road ahead with a no.

And that’s what I really fear. Not the rejection itself, but the feeling of helplessness that is likely to accompany this one. This is a good book. It’s levelling up on my past work – or at least that’s how I feel anyway. I just won’t know what to do next if the thumbs turn down.

2021 can get in the bin. It was not a good year for me. 2022? Well, we shall just have to see.

3 thoughts on “On 2022

  1. Rob, you sum up so well the hell that is writing for publication. I salute your resolve: I decided that I am temperamentally unsuited to this roller coaster, which is why my historical fiction never got off the ground – I couldn’t persevere for long enough to improve. (That and the fact that the ideas really weren’t original enough to be sales-worthy.) Ghost-writing is a doddle by comparison because the publisher approaches you, and you start writing with a contract. But it isn’t as creative and it isn’t, ultimately, yours. So stick to it, please, if you can bear the suspense. Your ideas are wildly original and your writing is excellent, and you deserve to get there in the end.

    Liked by 1 person

    • That’s so kind of you to say, Jan, thank you. I always thought that The Abbey Gate had so much potential – originality is overrated!

      As for the future, we shall see. Publishing is a difficult game and, even as something of a veteran, I have no idea which way the chips will fall. But I struggle on, for what else can any of us really do?

      Like

  2. Pingback: Back to basics | A Writer's Life

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