As It Is Written
I have failed, utterly and totally. Yet I feel irrationally exhilarated.
The agent I’ve been trying to please with a rewrite for the last year and a half (!), just sent me a final rejection, door shut, not even opened a crack. Instead of feeling stomped on, I feel relief.
This is so strange.
As a result of the revision process she triggered, I have a better manuscript. She wanted a more commercial book; I added more commercial focus by bringing the plot front and center, cutting literary flourishes, adding a “ticking clock” feature for urgency, etc. I didn’t add enough for her (or maybe subtract enough for her), but I like this version of the story. I like it a lot.
This saga could read like this:
Agent discovers stand-out writer (“gifted” “literary star” “master of detail and description”), but writer is unable to produce marketable book.
Or like this:
Agent flatters writer (“gifted” “literary star” “master of detail and description”), causing writer to strive for too long to turn a manuscript into something it was never going to be.
In all honesty, I think it’s the latter.
Either way, I sally forth to discover a new agent, carrying with me the benefit of the paces she put me through, but hoping to find an agent who reads the book as it is written and sees the beauty of the story as it is written and takes on representation of the project as it is written.
here’s to creative synthesis . . .