One of the most challenging aspects of being a working writer is dithering. Shilly-shallying. Not being able to decide. Is this story done yet? Should I revise it for a tenth time? When do I stop writing fiction and get back to non-fiction? And all of this has to be decided for a mere half-hour of writing time a day.
I’ve neglected this blog a little because I’ve been finishing up a non-fiction book. To no one’s greater surprise than mine, an editor at Penguin is actually reading it. You just never know. Meanwhile novel number seven has been demanding my attention. One through six haven’t been published yet either.
Don’t forget the children. Stories. Lots of stories. Some days three or four story ideas crowd into my head at a time. And I only have half-an-hour to write. Decisions, decisions!
I’d pretty much decided to turn back to non-fiction for a while when I had an unexpected email. A publisher actually wants to see the whole manuscript of my Medusa novel, Interview with the Gorgon. For those who haven’t read my past posts, this novel was under contract with a publisher about six years ago. Then they dithered.
The editor who’d accepted it for publication left the press. They decided they didn’t want to do it. No kill fee. No thank you. Just “my name is no.” Funny thing about it is, since then many presses—after I went out and bought their books just so I could make comparisons—also said “not for us.” Getting this email was completely unexpected.
I used to be a professor at Breck University. Now I profess nothing. I work for a faceless corporation in New York City that publishes non-fiction books. Getting to and from work takes three hours a day. Sleep takes a few, too. Writing is the orphan child of my time.
I’ve never given up on Medusa. I’ve never given up on this blog. To read me is to love me. Even if your name is no. If only I could make up my mind.