What Comes Next

I did something I wasn’t planning to do last week. I pitched Tree Gods in DVPit.

Don’t get me wrong. I absolutely planned to pitch. Just not this early. I’d planned to wait until June. No specific reason for June, except maybe it was far enough away from March to sound good. But I jumped off the bridge, and now I’ve got to go swimming.

On top of that, I submitted my ghost story, Flipping, for ReviseResub’s April contest this year. THAT was not on my to-do list at all. But I’ve had some agent interest in it—again, me and my pitch-happy trigger finger—and it’s just too much fun to let it sit when it could be out there getting ready to query. Once again, I jumped into the deep end.

That means it’s time to get ready to go under a number of times. It’s time to face…rejection.

I’m not going to talk a lot about the psychological and emotional aspect of rejection. It hurts. It hurts a lot. First thing I do after a rejection that stings is go for a walk. I need to get out. And then I need chocolate. But after that…what happens?

Well, then it’s time to stick with the plan. Acceptance is the exception rather than the rule. It makes sense to know what you will do if one thing doesn’t work out and you need to do something different.

For Tree Gods, I had already sent it (mid-April) for targeted Beta feedback. I sent a letter with each copy of the manuscript detailing exactly what I wanted that reader to look at. That story is very close to the vision I have for it. In addition to that, I started revising the series from first draft to second draft. I probably won’t do more than that, but having the first fifty pages of every book in my series polished, the synopses all proofed and ready for editorial eyes, and a clear, overarching vision for the whole quartet is something that will make me feel good about those books. Tree Gods is ready to head out into the query world.

While Tree Gods is out there, I have another story in development and drafting. Always be writing the next thing.

Flipping is another case. Flipping is at a different stage of development. It’s not embryonic, but it’s definitely a younger story. For Flipping, I have already scheduled one CP to look at it, and am actively looking for more readers. Additionally, I have begun looking for comps—because apparently paranormal romance is a thing, but paranormal romcoms are not that common. Is that something I will have to change to sell the book or something that will make it stand out? I don’t know yet. Time to read more ghost stories.

Having a plan is what helps me deal with rejection. The sadness and unhappiness are hard. They last longer than I’d like. But what helps me to get past the emotional reaction is moving on, having a plan I can preemptively set in motion to keep me working toward my goals and not wondering what comes next.

I don’t like uncertainty when it comes to rejection. There’s enough of that in hoping for a good outcome, thanks!

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