I have been submiting a lot lately; pieces for publication in literary magazines, climbing websites, sample blogs for freelance work and even after a big deep breath the first three chapters of my book to a publishers.
I have totted up the my total submissions and my success rate is not looking good. But the Norwegian pointed out to me, quite rightly, that when I was a fundraiser I knew that I had to submit between 8 and 10 applications to get one success. So why should I expect any less with my writing. I submit and I wait. It is this waiting, this franticing checking of emails that is killing me, the occassional yes’s I’ve had are far outweighed by the great yawning nothing, far worse than the odd considerate, ‘Thanks, but no, it is not quite right for us’ reply.
It is interesting to note that submit means, ‘to allow yield to the authority or will of another,’ as well as to put forward an opinion, piece of writing or application. Submitting doesn’t suit me. I am assertive, not submissive. I don’t want to ‘submit’ my work, walking backward out of the room, averting my eyes.
Perhaps I need to turn around the way I look at these things. Count the number of times I tap someone on the shoulder and say, ‘Oi, what about this for your magazine or what about that for your website?’ as a measure of success, or at least the hard work I’m putting in, rather than being bowed under the weight of the empty inbox.
Or perhaps should I call my submissions something else?
‘Dear Ms Whiskers, Editor of Cats Monthly magazine. Here is my assertion… No that’s not right. Unbearabilty pretencious.
What about, here is my presentation ‘Ginger cats make better pets’ But no again, that makes it sound like something in powerpoint littered with clip art and pie charts.
Would anyone like to submit any other suggestions?