I melt in the sun. I am a puddle of goo with no brain. My synapses won’t fire and the whole day goes by without me having accomplished a single thing. I’ve pulled out a fan, I’m cracking a red bull, and I’m damned determined to not let this heat beat me into submission. Although submission is looking more appealing with every passing moment.
Last month my writing critique partner and I decided to push ourselves by really focusing on submissions. We had a bet going, whoever got the most rejections in the month of July would hold bragging rights, and had to buy the first round of drinks on the wine train adventure we have planed for when one or both of our books sell.
It wasn’t about the rejections so much as it was about the act of putting ourselves out there. If you never submit to agents or publishers, then you never have a chance at getting a yes. 10 submissions will never cut it. Add a zero and double that number. If there was one thing that stuck with me from conferences this past year it’s this: Its a NO game, not a YES game. Agents and publishers get hundreds of submissions a month. They aren’t looking for reasons to say yes to your work. They are looking for reasons to say no. So not only does it mean that you’ve got to REALLY put yourself out there, but you can’t be afraid to edit and grow along the way.
So drum roll please….. We tied!
For the month of August and September we have embarked on a whole new challenge. Keep in mind that we both have relatively young scripts we’re working on. We’re both fans of some fairly accomplished authors. And while keeping up with those who’ve been in the industry since before my birth is probably foolish, we have spunk. So we’ve committed to writing 2,000 words of pros every day. Crazy right?!
Here’s the real crazy thing. We’ve been doing this, an average of 6 days a week each, and guess what?! Our script length has more then doubled, the story is flowing without struggle, I feel more accomplished, and fucking damn proud of myself. The thing is, there were weeks where I’d be lucky to pull in 2000 words, and now I’m writing at least 12,000 a week. The best part? It doesn’t feel like crap. It feels good. Plus, even if it is crap, that’s what the editing process is for.
Historically I’m an edit as I write author. Which has it’s benefits and drawback. The biggest draw back is that I’ll spend entire days editing and never move forward on the manuscript. If it’s never finished, then what’s the point? So I’m pushing the boundaries of my comfort zone and trying something new. Something, so far, I can’t complain about.
Besides, if it works for Stephen King, why can’t it work for me? Clearly he’s learned a thing or two, and I’m not afraid to try and follow in his foot steps. Besides, if it works, I’ll have my rough draft done by the first of September! Pretty cool if you ask me.