It's been 4 weeks today since I sent off my first cover letter & manuscript for Echo Valley. The average waiting time for a response from an agent or publisher is 6-12 weeks-and that's if you'll even get a response at all. They are, after all, inundated with letters from people like me.
My waiting time hasn't even scratched the surface of the earliest time I could hear back by. Yet, regardless of being fully aware of how stupid it is to feel this way, the wait has made me feel, for lack of a better word, shit.
I'm aware this could just well be another case of 'post-finished-novel-depression' (If that's not a thing, i'm making it a thing.). I worked on Echo Valley for an absolute minimum of half an hour, 5 days a week until it was finished. To suddenly stop was weird. To not be creating, is weird.
I tried working on my other novel that I had disbanded to finish Echo Valley in hope of a distraction from checking my e-mails every 5 minutes. But I seem to have lost the love for it right now. Yet my need to be creating something is borderline obsessive. and border-crossingly unhealthy.
I've learnt from this experience that sometimes it's good to just do nothing. Play some games, or simply just crash on the sofa and talk about stupid stuff with your significant other for an evening. But I am a die hard hypocrite to my own advice; I've returned to music- but without the pressure. Or at least I'm trying to. So that it's more about enjoying it and less about the...well, obsession.
It's also given me plenty of time to think about a possibility my deluded brain hadn't thought of: not hearing back from any agents after the 12 weeks. Which got me thinking about the idea of self-publishing.
I could ramble for ages about the pros and cons of self-publishing, but the bottom line is if you go through a publishing house or agent, professionals have to rate your work and see if it is 'worthy' of publishing.
With Self-publishing, anyone can publish their book. No matter how bad it might be. Not to say that I've read self-published books that are awful, but I can't help but hold the feeling of failure slightly If i am unsuccessful with the traditional route- despite being told by honest beta readers what they thought of my book and how I could (and have) made it better.
But then there are temptations of the DIY route. You get full control of your book design and layout (I'm a designer, so not having full input would irritate me to no end) and the main attraction to self-pub is that you get to keep 100% of your book sales. But being completely honest, that doesn't bother me. I didn't write a book to make money, I wrote it for the same reason most writers write: because I felt compelled to. And I want it published so I can turn my art into something tangible. Something I can actually get out of the madness of my head and into a collection of paper I can hold in my hands and share it with the world.
I'll b covering my insanity over the next 8 weeks. Stay tuned!
What do you think? Self-Publishing or Traditional? Lost your sanity to an empty inbox? Let me know in the comments below!