My haze is not purple because we all know what happened to Jimi, mine is blue. And I think I finally figured out why. TA DA.
I have no direction. I used to live in RI. The smallest state in the union. No matter where you lived in the state it was only an hour to cross it. So living in the farthest southeastern corner, I could get to the farthest northwestern corner in an hour. Okay an hour and twenty minutes with traffic. I could hit all the malls and still be home in time for supper. I could go to an aunt's in Warwick, see another one in Cumberland, and hit my cousin's in Bristol before heading home to Tiverton. No big deal.
Along the way, I would pass historical sites and landmarks I had grown up with, cousins homes, familiarity. And always, there was the ocean. RI has 417 miles of coastline. (Or thereabouts. We have a lot of islands and for some reason, those count.) If I ever got lost, I always headed south.
Ever since I moved to the Piedmont I've been lost. I carry maps in my car. Whenever I have to go somewhere I have to plot out how to get there, look at my maps, Google it, MapQuest it, re-write it, and drive slowly so I don't miss what I'm looking for.
I don't drive the highway, so this makes for adventures all the way around.
You may ask what does this have to do with my haze? Simple. The queries I've been sending out have been for my Regency romance. I've also been writing a comtemporary women's fiction-y romantic kind of thing. I have a bunch of other Regencies, a few other contemporaries, a YA and a category romance thrown in for good measure.
I've been waiting to hear on the partials because if one gets picked up, then I know that I need to continue writing in that vein. I would like to get a 4 book deal with that. If it doesn't get picked up, then I would like to continue with Genna & Tony.
But how do I know what to do if nobody tells me? I'm lost. I have no direction. I need to know what to do.
I don't want to waste my time writing the Regencies if they're not going to get picked up (now). I'll write something else. Step Two. Plan B. I don't drive on the highway, in other words, I don't write fast. I can't just bang these things out, (although some people seem to think you can write a category in 3 days). I take my time, do a lot of revision and edits. I want no loop holes, plot holes, or that was just felts in my stuff. I take my time with the query to make sure it's perfect.
"They" say, once you send the query out, write the next book. Okay, I have 6 to choose from. But I don't want to waste my time writing something that won't get picked up either.
So I figured it out. I've come out of the haze and into the light. I have the answer. And it's not Genna & Tony. That story and Kate's (you don't know her, she's a 1K blurb that may or may not survive) are women's fiction and need to be captured, cultivated and caressed. (Gee, I like that, maybe I should use that in another post.)
I am going to continue my queries with the other 19 agents on my list. And I will finish my category romance because I found a house where it will fit. It's completely written (in longhand on paper with pen) so I only have to transfer it to word, clean it up, and let it go. There is also an agent who will look at it and hopefully sell it for me, and if not, I'll do it myself. It's not that hard to do for category.
Writing is a job. Sure it's fun and great and all that other stuff, but it's also work. And if I'm going to work, I'm going to get paid to do it. And pretty much, this is what it's all about. I'm not asking for 6 figure deal, I just want to get paid. When I started working in the restaurant business, I started as a dishwasher. If, as a writer, I have to start writing category, well then so be it. I'm still writing, does it matter what I write. Sure I'd like to become the next Julia Quinn or Susan Wiggs, but for now, I'm just me.
A little lost, but at least now I have a map.
PS And I don't mean to disparage any category romance writer's out there by comparing them with dishwashing. That was not my intention. It is just as hard to break into category as it is with New York. I was using the analogy for word count. 60-75k as compared to 85-95k. Dishwashing as compared to sous chef. That's all. And I was a dishwasher for a long time before I became a chef. They both handle the exact same number of dishes during the course of the night.