Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Keep Querying or Move On?

There is no magic number for how many times one should query, right? So when do you decide if you should keep hunting or if it's time to move on?

Do you rely on a gut feeling or something more palpable to the outside, like a date circled on the calendar?

The thing is, if I had decided to persist with my first attempt at a book, then I wouldn't have been happy, even if it did work out.
I had no idea what I was doing and as a result, it was terribly written, something better left in the confines of my computer screen. Moving on was the more appropriate thing to do.

For those of you who have put away your work, what made you not want to publish it yourself?


  1. I can't really say too much about this as I write poetry and not novels. They are different beasts when it comes to submitting.

    I keep my poems circulating for about a year and a half (if I think they're ready) and, after that time, evaluate things. Some poems I have loved were rejected over and over and others I sent out because they felt finished though they weren't my "thing" and they were taken first shot. You never know.

    With that in mind, I have been reading a lot of nonfiction books on crafting poetry. Most of them make me feel increasingly inadequate and stupid. Sadness...

  2. I have lots of stuff written when I was younger that will never see the light of day. It wasn't until a few years ago when I pulled out an old story and rewrote it that I started submitting.

  3. Trying to figure this one out for myself.

  4. I have plenty of stuff that I wrote in the begining of my writing career; its still unpublished. Its better to move on by treating those books as practice books.If you want you can revisit those books years later after you have learned lots and gathered more writing wisdom.

  5. I have shelved two books like this, though I am far more confident of my second one rather than my first. Don’t think I’ll self-publish simply because I think I learn more with each book so I hope to write one good enough to catch the eye of a publisher someday!

  6. I haven't even bothered querying my first two novels. I know they're just practice! And I expect my next few will be also. But that's okay, because I wouldn't want to publish too soon! I've read interviews with authors who cringe and are so embarrassed about their first published novels. They know now it should never have seen beyond the computer, LoL. I don't want that to be me!

    On July 3rd I sent my notes to you from your pages! Did you receive the email?

    Glad to see you're back, Saumya!!!

  7. I queried every single thing I wrote (and finished) after turning fifteen. Not kidding. That's six different projects in all. The sixth was the one that made it. I honestly don't know when I decided to move on from the others - with a couple it was just a few rejections and I was crushed and moved on, with others I persisted. I think you do need to keep trying but you need to trust your gut - and pay attention to the kinds of responses or rejections you're getting - to decide when to move on. There's no magic number.