This story I’ve been working on did not spring fully grown from my head like Athena. It has been a rambling toddler of a story. It has kept me up at night. It has gone to school, and come home again with fresh new ideas. It has told me that it knows more than I do.
At this point, my story is getting ready to go away to college. It is technically fully grown, but I worry about it standing on its own. I worry about criticism it might have to take in the real world. I worry about it facing rejection.
Just as any parent knows, I understand that these things are inevitable. Necessary.
Okay, that’s enough extended metaphor. I’m not a mommy blogger. Hell, I’m barely qualified as a soccer stepmom. Where I focus my creative energy is mostly in my writing.
The book is one careful edit away from completion, and I know it’s beyond time to put this story out into the world. Right now, I’m carefully selecting the first batch of five literary agents I want to query. I’m reading their blogs, their bios, their tweets. I’m checking the client lists for familiar names, comparable styles. I’m reading up on their larger agencies, and I’m googling for reviews.
The reason I chose the metaphor at the opening is because I feel like I’ve just picked out the Ivy League schools, the first-pick colleges for my kid. These are the people I really think I can work with. And it’s not exactly the greatest odds that any of them will choose to work with me.
It takes seven NOs to get a YES, right? Hmm. Perhaps I should query my second-choice agents first?! Nah. After all, I felt a click with these people. Maybe one of them will feel a click with me.