Pushing through the odds

Nevets is posting a series on his blog, of pearls of wisdom from published authors.

My humble contribution appeared today: how I dealt with the knowledge that agents receive 10,000 submissions a year, from which they might sign one or two.  Doesn't sound good odds, does it?  Hop on over to see why, in fact, those numbers are irrelevant.

I've been very quiet online recently, for a good reason: my sheer desperation to finish the third ms before Christmas, at least to the state where I can give it to others to check.  For the last four weeks I've been saying it'll be finished tomorrow.  Now, I have only two pages left to revise, plus some minor fixes and a few logic problems that surfaced when I wrote the explanation of how the crime was committed.  (I always spot inconsistencies when I write that bit...surprisingly, they're always easy to fix).

So I'm revising my standard chant:  it won't be finished tomorrow; it'll be finished today.

Which is a good thing because our Christmas street party is tonight.


Sarah W said...

You are competing against yourself, to be as good as the books you love.

Very nice---I'm keeping this one for my quote book, along with "Try not to think so much, Socrates. It will only get you into trouble.”

Both are sound advice!

Julie said...

Oh, I did love that Socrates line. A little bit heartbreaking.

Yay for finishing #3!

Gary Corby said...

Julie, one of the unique powers of historical fiction is, we know what the characters don't about their future. I tend to use it for all it's worth. Lots or opportunity for irony!

Gary Corby said...

Thanks Sarah! Though I'm not sure Socrates got the hint.

CPatLarge said...

Congrats on #3! I'm pushing on number two (although I haven't sold either one...yet) and need to stop tweaking, editing, second-guessing and let myself be done.

Does it ever get easier?!

L. T. Host said...

YAY!! I've been waiting for this announcement. Okay, that sounded weird. I mean, I've been cheering you on. Is that better?

And great post over at Nevets' blog. I must say, the conversation we had when you were here about the odds was both daunting and reassuring. You are a great motivator and I can't thank you enough for the impetus--and input-- you gave me.

Steady onward!

Peter Cooper said...

I haven't read your guest post yet, but I'll be certain to hop on over there when I get a chance. I think when I was at the stage of writing and submitting my manuscript, I always came back to the words of one of my favourite philosophers, Han Solo. "Never tell me the odds!" Seriously, it got me through :-)

Have a really great Christmas, Gary, and I hope you can have some rest-time too.

Gary Corby said...

Cyndi: No, it doesn't get any easier. You just get new and different ways to be depressed! Weirdly, I found my second book to be by far the hardest to write, even though I knew for sure it was sold before I'd typed a word.

Gary Corby said...

Hi LT, I'd forgotten we talked about that!

You know, all I've done is drop a draft which is theoretically complete. Though having said that, the moment I woke this morning I realized there are two things I need to fix.

My first line of defense is my wife and elder daughter. They read it now and I do fix-ups, of which there will be many small, for sure.

Gary Corby said...

Hey Peter,

Merry Christmas to you and yours too,
and a joyous Saturnalia to all my readers!