Eleven Signs That You Don’t Spend Enough Time on Your Work in Progress

By , August 29, 2011 12:00 am


I try to remain very cooled headed when it comes to querying and waiting for a response.  I expect nothing but the fact that I did my best, that I will always try to improve, and that an agent’s/assistant’s having to read thousands of unsolicited queries is a terrible experience.


"Indie Naivete" by MMRule

"Indie Naivete" by MMRule

Fighting the Vortex of Insanity

Designing a literary cupcake after Bransford’s book, however, gave me some jitters.  Bransford is active on Twitter, Facebook, his blog, etc.  Unlike when I write about Stephen King or send out a query letter, I heard Disneyesque birds singing all around me that the person whose opinion matters most very well could see my work and like it.  (For the record he did!)


Life Must Continue

The experience made me wonder what would happen if I were able to sit in front of a computer all day with my imagination fueling me.  Fortunately I don’t own a smart phone and have errands and work related responsibilities to complete every day, so it was easy for me to continue living my life while I waited to see if Bransford would notice my post.  But my mind still went to dark places that day.  So many places, in fact, that I surpassed a “top 10″ list!


The Exception to the Rule presents Eleven Signs That You Don’t Spend Enough Time on Your Work in Progress.  I’ll let you guess if I’m guilty of any of them!  I admit to nothing and I do not believe that it takes one to know one!  Seriously.


11 Signs That You Don’t Spend Enough Time on Your Work in Progress

11.  You read that form rejection letter so many times that you convince yourself that it really was personalized in some way.


10.  You bought a smart phone so you can access your email 24/7—just in case an agent asks for a partial.


9.  You follow agents on Twitter and keep @mentioning them so they will notice you and realize that you should be represented!


8.  You think that having common interests with an agent means that he/she will definitely want to represent you.  (Yes, Stacia Decker, I agree that people should take care of their teeth! I can tell you’ll love my novel!)


7.  You dream daily about the movie version of your book and pay no attention to the fact that Dakota Fanning has aged five very formative years since you realized that she is the perfect embodiment of your protagonist.


6.  You think you’re friends with your dream agent’s assistant because his/her name appears on your gchat sidebar ever since you received that emailed rejection.  You don’t care that you two have never chatted!


5.  You keep track of when agents tweet so you have insight into their work ethic and can guess when they might respond to your query.


4.  You have a tab open in your web browser that shows a clock for every time zone where you are querying.  (Come on.  What will that accomplish?)


3.  You believe that there is a need for a site that provides more information than querytracker.net


2.  You founded querytracker.net (Sorry, Patrick McDonald!)


1.  You are only interested in learning about agents, querying response rates, etc. because you have that writing thing DOWN!


Now it’s time for your thoughts!

Comment by adding your additions to the list. 

Or reveal which numbers on the list sound a little too much like you!

10 Responses to “Eleven Signs That You Don’t Spend Enough Time on Your Work in Progress”

  1. David Nelson says:

    I usually reject my work faster than I can get it submitted, however,

    # 12. I am working more than ever before and on my website to promote my Indie writing than I work on my WIP.

    #13. Of course, I’ll be an overnight success someday 3 or 5 years from now after a lot of hard work and determination, if I could just get the book finished.

    #14. The dishes have to go in the washer, grandma needs help to the potty, the lawn has to be mowed, the cat has fleas, the garage is so messy that I can put a car in it, but I did write down several great one liners from my 8 year old if I could only remember where I put the napkin I scribbled them on.

    • MMRule says:

      Excellent additions! I LOLed when I read the part about the 8 year old! I usually find the napkin several years later in an old coat…

  2. David Nelson says:

    . .. can’t put a car in it. hmm, once again I should have rejected my work before submitting.

  3. David Nelson says:

    #15 you’re writing blogs about not writing books. :)

  4. Nancy Kelley says:

    #16 When you finally get a response from an agent and they mention a character or plotline, you can’t remember its appearance in your book.

    #17 You’ve gotten really, really good at Angry Birds.

    #18 When people ask how the book’s coming, you answer in the vaguest terms possible.

  5. Susie says:

    finding people to follow on Twitter!

    (and hey, your literary cupcakes are genius. Nice writing on your blog too…hang in there!!!)

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