(also known as old news to people who follow my Facebook feed.)
Redlisted is done. Finished. Complete at 80,000 words, it's finalized and I will work on it no more.
I have sent it out to two agents so far. I plan to send it out to one agent a week until I run out of agents to bother or someone indicates interest.
Some rather optimistic (or kind) friends of mine are all like OF COURSE it will be published. I am fairly sure that it won't be, at least not by a traditional publishing house. I am up against some pretty nasty odds and I will be shocked and amazed if anyone wants to pick it up.
Let's take a look at the situation.
STUFF IN MY FAVOR
This book has been edited by like seventeen people.
I think the final draft is pretty great, and I usually hate everything I do forever.
It's about vampires. Who doesn't like vampires?*
Despite what this blog may lead you to believe I have a fairly okay grasp of English grammar.
I spellchecked the manuscript and made sure to format it according to industry standards.
My writer's group seemed to like the first chapter after I rewrote it for the eighth time.
I don't think there are any plot holes!
I am psychotically dedicated to my quest for publication and will exhaust all options before giving up.
THINGS THAT ARE NOT LOOKING SO GREAT
*No one likes vampires. In fact some agents are like "send us anything, AS LONG AS IT HAS NO VAMPIRES WHATSOEVER." Something about market saturation. Not like I didn't know that getting in to the project.
I have no publication credits.**
My cover letter is mediocre to embarrassing.
My synopsis is... Well the plot is complicated, it's not my fault.
Did I mention no one wants to pick up another vampire novel?
**I did write a short story though, and I'm trying to get it published.
The truth is I didn't write this book because I thought it would be popular or get published. I wrote it because I felt I had to. They (who?) say that everyone has a story to tell. I don't know if I understand why, but mine was about the undead.
I know it's hokey. At first I was ashamed. "What is your novel about, Sara?" "It's... uhh... vampires." I am over that. We can't decide what is in our heart of hearts! We can only decide whether or not to acknowledge it.
I love this book and I will be its champion. I will give it the best chance I can in this crazy world.
In any case, I am mitigating my freakouts (somewhat) about the submission process and the looming spectre of universal rejection by working on another novel. It is not a sequel to Redlisted; it's an unrelated project. If asked to describe the genre I would say "dystopian dieselpunk fantasy".
Now watch there be a glut of that by the time I'm done with the damn thing.
No Sara! Don't be bitter. Who cares if a million books like mine are published tomorrow? I'm doing what I love and that is the most important thing.
It helps my sanity to know that I have another story in my heart. Maybe there are a lot more in there waiting to be discovered. Even if Redlisted gets rejected by everyone, I'll try again with what I'm working on now.
I expect nothing but I hope for the best.