The Importance of Being Nervous

Why am I nervous? Because I’ve heard from the editor that I’ve been working with and she’s told me that she should be getting to my partial in the next couple of weeks. Argh!!! And I’ve gone from impatient waiting to nervous twitching instead. Perhaps it’s nicer not knowing. Because when you don’t know, you can entertain all kinds of wonderful thoughts such as they love it so much they want your full manuscript instantly. Or that they offer you a fifty book contract on the spot. Or just that they like it but they want you to change a few things. I’d be happy with anything that isn’t a flat-out no at this stage. šŸ™‚

The problem is that I’ve learned heaps in the past six months. Especially the past three. Which means that the partial I sent three months ago is probably not the partial I would send now. Sigh. But hindsight is a wonderful thing. I ‘think’ the conflict is okay – certainly the character biographies I sent through were approved of – so that should help, but ultimately you never know until the editor gives you the magic yes. I still like my partial, I still think it was good. There are things I would change now but that’s just to do with pace. In spite of all of that, I may get the flat-out no. And in which case – here’s the important thing – I do have another manuscript ready to go. I’m not giving up until I get the ‘please do not submit to us again’ letter*.

No retreat, no surrender right?

*Note: There is no such letter (that I know of). šŸ™‚

21 thoughts on “The Importance of Being Nervous”

  1. Truthfully, Jackie, the partial I sent for The Sheikh six weeks back isn’t the partial I’d send now. I’d send the one I sent just sent three weeks ago.

    Heck, I wouldn’t write the beginning of The Greek four days ago the same as I’d done a week and a half ago.

    It’s always like that. I think we’re always growing, learning, sharpening our craft. We’re always gaining new perspectives too, and that changes how we would do things as well.

    That’s what writers do. And then we get insecure and nervous, because the minute we think we know everything we’re going to stop learning. I think that’s the importance of nervousness.

    I’m excited for you! Maybe we’ll hear back close together. šŸ™‚

  2. Maisey – yeah, that’s so true. You do the best you can do at the time. My hope is that the ed can see enough potential to overlook the initial faults and give me some revisions.
    And you’re so right – I didn’t even say why nervousness was important but you’ve given me the answer right there! You’re a star. I hope mine’s good news – I KNOW yours will be! šŸ™‚

  3. Not sure if you remember, but Hot nights partial is VERY different from what it is now, and even though the current set of revs were more focused on the middle/end of the ms, i still tweaked chap one and rewrote from chap 2 onwards. I think everytime we LOOK at a ms – we change it, and for the better, cause as you pointed out – we know more.

    I’m rooting for you (umm meant in the nicest possible way, not in a rude way)

  4. Jackie, first off, yaay on hearing back. That’s way better than total silence, trust me I know, lol! Iā€™m keeping fingers firmly crossed for you and hope you don’t have to send off the other ms, just yet!

  5. Love the new look of your blog! And totally agree with Maisey and Janette and YOU about why its good to be nervous. Hopefully you hear before I send mine, or I’ll be nervous for you AND me!!!

    Love the new look on the blog btw! VERY cool!

  6. Hi Jackie. Just saw the migrane post, and thought I’d answer here because you’re more likely to be checking into more recent posts. I just had a thought. Can you use the 2nd migrane in a different way? He willingly places himself in her care, you said. But how about if she has become so finely tuned to him that she recognises the signs, takes control. Manages to stop that migrane before it takes hold. And he lets her. Then you’re not writing about the migrane any more, you’re writing about her caring, and knowing him. And him surrendering his french alphahood because he knows that she’s right. Maybe he’ll even learn how in tune they are?

  7. I think it was Michelle W who said on subcare, quoting someone who I will now paraphrase: An amateur always thinks their work is perfect, while a professional is always looking to improve.

  8. Oh how exciting! Then again, a couple of weeks in editor language might mean some time in the summer šŸ˜‰

    I do hope not, you’ve waited quite long enough. Everything crossed for a good result for you.

  9. I’m sure she will love the partial,Jackie, and anything she doesn’t will be fixable.

    And being nervous means you will always strive to be better.

    crossing my finger for you.

    Sri.

  10. Janette – thanks lovie! Yeah, I’m hoping for revisions so I can change it!

    Maya – cheers! I guess knowing is better. Swapping impatience for nervousness – argh!

    Rach – it’s cool re the blog eh? Blogger in Draft as some great new templates and backgrounds. I hope I hear before you send yours too. Only one set of nervousness allowed. šŸ˜‰

    Sally – that’s some great advice. Think I’ll probably do something along those lines actually.

    Maisey – I like that. That must mean I’m an uber-professional!

    Joanne – thanks! Yeah, it’s only been 12 weeks – early days in editor land! – but it feels like an eternity. Then again, I’ve had 12 weeks of lovely pretend. Hopefully reality won’t hit me too hard. šŸ™‚

    Sri – Oh, I hope so! I can fix it – whatever’s wrong, I can fix it!

    Caroline – sleep? What’s that? šŸ™‚

  11. Very best of luck to you Jackie, hope she loves it to bits. Or at the very least sees enough of your trademark wit and tenacity to give you positive feedback you can really sink your teeth into.

    Sounds to me like you’ve already scoped out any potential problems which means you’ll be good to go as soon as you hear from her.

    And I’m with Maisey and You, have a few printed books frankly which I reread and think ‘darn wish I hadn’t let the hero do that..!’ C’est la vie! The good news is you’re still invested enough in the story to actually care.
    H x

  12. Gosh, why would she torture you like that? Couldn’t she have just let you know when she has something more definitive? We’re always growing and changing and I think we’d always craft a story in a different way if we had a chance to do it over. An editor would know that. I mean, they’d have to wouldn’t they? I’m sure they look for the underlying potential. I have everything crossed for you!

  13. Heidi – awww, thanks for your lovely comment! I just hope she sees enough potential in it not to reject it out of hand. And yeah, I do care about it but hey, if it doesn’t work out it doesn’t work out. I guess if it doesn’t, the good thing is I have another one waiting in the wings. šŸ™‚

    Kaily – she wasn’t intending to torture me I don’t think. I actually made the cardinal sin of emailing her and that was her response. I should have waited until 16 weeks really but I was feeling impatient. Yep,I hope she sees the potential too!

    Judy – yeah! Absolutely no surrendering here. šŸ˜‰ So far…

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