Tuesday 1 February 2011

A Novel and 12 Guinea Pigs

So now that I’m not a Shop Girl I’m working at being a novelist.
Last week I sent off my first five chapters to an agent.
I’d met up with her last May after I’d won a Blog Award.
“I was actually thinking you might be good at teenage novels,” she said, after reading my synopsis.
I thought of snogging and slang and my mind went blank.
I said I’d try it out but instead I continued with my original plan.
The chapters I’ve sent are not for a teenage novel. This might prove problematic.
I’m hoping she miraculously finds some hidden genius in it worth pursuing.
I assume, being a pessimist, that she will give it a half-hearted tick and write, ‘better luck next time,’ at the bottom in pencil.
I rang her up before I sent them.
Sending off submissions without phoning first is for cowards. It’s what I’ve always done.
“Is today a good day?” I said, sitting on the dusty stairs of my shop, feeling butterflies in my stomach.
“I might take a while to get back to you,” she said.
“Take as long as you like,” I heard myself say and cringed.
She only takes one new client on a year which sounds far too discerning if you ask me.
The thing is not to believe that Agents are Gods with the power to make or break you.
They need writers as much as we need them, right?
I’ve got to play my part and get it written regardless.
So here goes.
I bought a half-price calendar covered in guinea pigs on the weekend to mark out my aims. (It was guinea pigs or nothing).
The difference between a writer and a successful writer is the first spends a lot of time buying stationary and talking about writing and the latter actually writes.
I will endeavour for this next crucial month not to get distracted by the usual temptations or the twelve guinea pigs.
So the blurb: Once upon a time in a land far away (depending on where you), there was a boy (well, he starts as a boy then becomes a man) who in a moment of incredible coincidence discovers that in a land far, far away (again, depending on your current geographical position) there is a girl he needs to meet....
Haha, look, the guinea pig is hiding under a book!
Is it tea time yet?


Nicola Hulks said...

Woo hoo! I'm excited about reading your book, so keep writing! And agent lady - get on board!

Shop Girl said...

Thanks Nicola - Your encouragement is golden!!! How's your project going? X

nicolahulks said...

I've been reeeeally rubbish since my short story collection came out and haven't progressed half as well as I'd have liked to. It really is the sneaking suspicion that it may be rubbish!!! Doing some non fiction work though which is great fun so not all bad! Did you ever hear back from agent lady? (though I suppose this is early days in agent terms!)