I’m back from my week-long pity party after receiving the dreaded ‘Thanks, but no thanks’ email from Penguin Random House (PRH) disappointment is an understatement for how I felt but here I am, still writing.
The feedback was generic but did give some insight into to where I may have gone wrong. A lesson learnt from this experience I can tell you that! To help me overcome this stumbling block I registered on PRH writer’s academy scheme, on 22nd August I participated in the first webinar and learnt new tools on how to overcome writer’s block (I’ll share the slides in another blog). One of my challenges with writing is my environment, having two small children and working full-time tires me out. I do struggle to find the time and when I do, I’m battling with other thoughts running through my mind. Writing doesn’t come easy sometimes but when it does, it brings me so much freedom. I am truly happy with my pen and notepad, pouring out my feelings and thoughts. So I will continue documenting this journey in the hope it will inspire someone else to follow what they truly love doing – even if it doesn’t pay the bills!
So what’s next? I have a few goals to complete before the end of the year and then I will consider other options that await me. The first goal is to submit 5000 words to Myslexia by 20th September (Novel must be at least 50k), it’s another writer’s initiative that I hope will get my story noticed and then who knows?
I realised I didn’t make it clear I have two pieces of work I’m hoping to publish – oops, sorry to those that are not telepathic. The first story is my children’s book, the story that started this journey! I received tumble weeds with this so it is currently on the back burner (but not forgotten!) until I can come back to it with fresh eyes (new POV). The second is my first draft of a novel aimed at young adults/adults. This story is close to my heart as it is based on my upbringing, which was unique – well it was back in 1994 and I feel it is still relevant to share the story. When I heard that PRH were looking for writers like me I decided that my story and my upbringing fitted the criteria. Either the story was not for them or my writing needs more polishing. I definitely am open to constructive criticism, just need to seek the right counsel before submitting to a Publishing House again.
A few of my followers on Instagram (who are writer’s) shared how they dealt with rejection. It was nice to hear that they too went through what I am going through, and they went on to be published. I was never majorly into social media before but Instagram has been such a wonderful source of inspiration/support and it’s a fantastic forum to share your work. I’ve connected with other aspiring authors as well as authors who have been kind enough to speak to me in private. I am so fortunate to have family, friends and strangers show such kindness and support my journey. It truly helps me to keep my head up, and to remain focused on my goal. In the words of Cassius Clay:
‘He who is not courageous enough to take risks will accomplish nothing in life’
I will continue to push my dream. I will succeed, I’m sure of it.
If you’re reading, thank you!