What now?

Yes! I’ve got an agent!

And now I have to get back to writing and give my agent a reason to want to keep me on her roster.

This appeared on my Twitterfeed this evening. And it is oh, so very true:

Ideas are easy peasy, dime a dozen. Turning them into books: That’s tough. – Rick Riordan

I have a million ideas in my head that I want to turn into books. I unabashedly (but surreptitiously) eavesdrop on conversations and write dialogue in my head. I jot down rough ideas on index cards so I don’t forget them, and I think of characters I’d like to write to fit those ideas. I contemplate character quirks, study behaviors, think up imaginary friends (and frenemies) based on the traits and personalities of people I know or once knew.

And then I let the ideas gestate. Or is it more like percolate? Maybe it’s a bit of both. But after a while, one of them feels ready. The story is still rough around the edges, and there are still some plot holes you can’t quite figure out how to fill, but it’s basically ready.

I’m almost there. The next story is so close, I can almost taste it. I know my main character. I know what makes her loveable, what makes her flawed, what makes her real. I know the love interest and all his quirks, why he’s so awesome, why my readers will totally crush on him. I know the obstacles of my story, everything the main character will need to overcome to get her Happily Ever After. And I know exactly how I want my readers to feel while they’re reading.

I am so close.

This is going to sound crazy, but I know I’m close but not quite there because I’m still scared of the story. I’m still scared to write it. I’m still afraid to put it down on paper because I’m not certain I can do it justice. And because I’m so scared, I can’t visualize it yet.

When I’m ready, I can see the first scene unfold in my head, and I’m not so terrified anymore. I’m still a bit scared, but it’s no longer paralyzing. What’s left of my fear will dissipate once I finish the first chapter, of course, only to be replaced by a heady mix of excitement, self-doubt, and nervous anticipation.

But that fear… It’s very real.

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5 comments

  1. arbliss

    Are you sure you’re not my twin sister?? LOL Maybe every writer goes through these emotions when they get an agent. You nailed exactly what I’m feeling. I pitched Book 2 and Book 3 as a series (both mostly outlined already) to my agent. She loved my ideas and wants me to write up a paragraph on each for her so we can work it into a 3 book proposal for the publishers. I’m ecstastic, but so scared. What if my next book isn’t as good? What if…? I could go on all day, but it won’t help me get these paragraphs done. Guess it’s time to get back to work…Great post, though! 🙂

    • E.M.

      OMG… I don’t know what I’ll do if Julia tells me to write up paragraphs on what I have in the pipeline. I’ve got this Sleeping Beauty story that I’m almost ready to write, and I think next will be kind of like a Little Mermaid meets All About Eve, and then I’m thinking that it would be either Mean Girls meets Cinderella next or Aladdin from Jasmine’s POV meets the Philadelphia Story… Suffice it to say, Will the Real Prince Charming Please Stand Up can totally stand alone, but I’ve got ideas for the rest of the Westgate Prep crew that can go on, like, indefinitely. Or until I’m sick of writing about high school, whichever comes first.

      And don’t get me started on my MG concept…

      • arbliss

        LOL Rockin’ the ideas – that’s great!! 🙂 I’m sure we’ll both do fine. The paragraphs she asked for aren’t supposed to be much, just a generalized pitch basically and then we would form a book proposal for them. I’m definitely making it harder than it has to be because I’m afraid of disappointing her. I feel the need to prove myself, which is probably silly. She already likes the ideas, so I just need to calm down and write a paragraph out. How the heck I managed to pitch the ideas over the phone to her is beyond me! LOL But if she ends up not liking those ideas, I’ve got a huge list to choose from. And, apparently, so do you! You and I should be just fine. 🙂

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