I was searching through my folder of poems and came across this one, which I wrote about three years ago. I had actually forgotten about it – but I thought I’d share it because it is still as true today as it was then.
I know exactly what will happen,
The path is perfectly clear.
There may well be a few surprises
But from the future I have nothing to fear.
I’ll spend the next few months researching,
Trying to get into my characters’ head.
What would they have worn, where would they have lived,
What is it they might have said?
I’ll stride mile after mile in the here and now,
But my mind will be in a different age.
I’ll write the words inside my head
Then rush home to get them onto the page.
I’m definitely a plotter,
but I know that I’ll find
That my characters will have other ideas,
So I will need to keep an open mind.
The garden will grow unrestrained,
And the dust will gather in reams.
The paint will continue to flake,
The house perfect only in my dreams.
In a year or so from now,
When I think it’s as good as can be,
I’ll send it to a reviewer,
For quite a reasonable fee.
It will take a few weeks for him to respond
And he’ll tell me what changes to make.
I won’t open the report immediately
But what I think he might say will keep me awake.
Then I’ll rewrite the bits I’ve been told to,
For what do I really know?
I don’t yet have the confidence,
For the literary line not to toe.
Then I’ll have to write a synopsis,
Which is harder than you think.
For you have to put it all on just one page,
Which is enough to turn one to drink.
Then I’ll search for some literary agents
Who I think sound reasonably OK.
But choosing them is really hard,
At least you don’t have to pay.
Then once I’ve chosen about ten,
I’ll read their submission rules without fail.
Then send the first three chapters and synopsis
And attach them in a begging e-mail.
Then I’ll wait for weeks or months,
Not really expecting a reply.
But if I do receive one
It will invariably make me cry.
For they’ll say it is really quite good,
But unfortunately it’s not their cup of tea.
They’re sure you’ll have luck somewhere else,
And please don’t take it all personally.
For every rejection I’ll die a little,
But continue to live in hope.
For I know the book is good, isn’t it?
Or am I just being a dope?
If I don’t get an agent, I’ll self-publish
Either way, I won’t be able to rest,
For then the really hard work starts
And I have to become a bit of a pest.
I will have to put it on FaceBook,
And tweet til my fingers are sore
And Blog until the cows come home
It really is such a bore.
I will have to tell everyone I meet
That I’ve written a book that’s the best.
And if they read it, can they leave a review
And give it 5 stars, no less.
And whilst I’m doing all that,
Which apparently has to be done,
I will be having to think what to write next
Oh, a writer’s life is such fun!