Monday, December 13, 2010

Juggling Too Many Balls

I was handed a list of agent-suggested revisions to my latest ms Inside Out last week.  It is YA contemporary; and, although the revisions are lengthy, it will not require a major over-haul of characters or plot.     I then sent her the first 30 pages of my WIP Amalgam . . . just so she would know what I had in the pipeline and to be sure that Inside Out was in fact the one we wanted to put out first.   

She got back to me that same day with an amazing note indicating that she loved it, wanted to know where it was going, how I saw the plot developing, and when it would be complete.  It is a dystopian (which apparently are hot right now) and written from the Male POV (which editors are begging for).
Being as sweet as she is, she told me not to base my decision on what editors are currently seeking and work on the whichever ms is calling to me now.  Of course she threw in the little caveat that perhaps I could work on both at the same time. lol

There is not a hard and fast deadline in which I have to get one of these manuscripts back to her, and the publishing world does grind to a virtual halt during the Holidays, but I have a nasty habit of putting personal deadlines on myself.  I tagged that date as January 15th.  Problem is, I know have two sets of completely different characters swirling around my head each written in totally different style. Add to that the stress of holiday shopping, the impending doom of visiting family, a half dozen holiday events I have committed to attending, and the everyday challenges of raising a family.  I find myself struggling to keep all the balls in the air!

A good non-writer friend of mine tells me the problem is that I am not focused, that until I decide which manuscript to dedicate my time too, they both will still in limbo with my muse taking an undeserved and unwelcome holiday.  I say what I need is a few more hours in the day, a housecleaner, and somebody to manage my carpool schedule!


  1. As long as your agent (and you) are still excited about the completed story, I'd give it and revisions most of my focus. Make the suggested changes, and see what you have when the dust settles. If you have any "extra" writing time use it on the WIP.

    I think deadlines are tremendous, and essential for some people, but be sure to allow extra time to account for holiday madness. Most parents have less time to work, etc. when their children are out of school, and there always seem to be 1,000 little side gatherings and such this time of year.

    In the end, be really jazzed that your agent provided you some direction on the edits (I'm editing with no such guidance, and it's awful), and that she likes your WIP so much. It'll all get done in time.

    Happy holidays, btw! I've really enjoyed reading about your progression and writerly life all these months. Hope to one day click over and see a link to buy one your books!


  2. I'm glad that it is going well for you and that you are setting deadlines for yourself. Christmas can be such a hectic time. I am thrilled that both MS are things that she is excited about and that is fantastic.

    Yes, it is hard to stay focused when bouncing back and forth between several projects at a time and I am sure that you will manage your time wisely.

    When the story and POVs and structures are very different that makes it even harder. I am so proud of you and all that you have already accomplished. Best wishes.

  3. I know you will be able to work on both of them, if that's what you choose-- you are an excellent juggler!

    Keep up the good work!

  4. Oh, I go through this all the time. Well...sort of. I don't have an agent or an editor but I do have several novels going at the same time. There's no feeling like the excitement you feel with a new story. Revisions aside, we still feel finished with the old one, even though we're not. So moving on is easy to do but not really all that fair to our original story. I had to pull back on the reins myself, make notes for the next WIP, then get back to my first. You'll get it all worked out though. I'm certain of that.