Mr. Know it all…
I would say maybe five years ago I started pitching my (unfinished) manuscript to literary agents.
I thought I did enough research on what agents wanted sent to them. Then I went to various agent’s websites and read their specific guidelines.
I was ready to go right?
More specifically hell no.
My main problem was that the book wasn’t ready yet. This was even after the book had been edited numerous times over the years.
Could you imagine how frustrated I was after paying hundreds of dollars and still not being at the finished line?
After being rejected a few times, I felt like I polished the manuscript enough to get noticed. One of the agents I submitted to liked my concept, but my story needed to be tightened up. I even had a few agents that requested a partial, but nothing materialized. I took their constructive criticism and incorporated the changes into my work.
The next wave of agents I submitted to either never got back to me or weren’t taking any clients at that time. I had been turned down so many times my head was spinning. Here I was trying to make this project the best it could be and I kept hitting a brick wall. At some point I asked myself would this book ever be ready or will it ever come out?
On top of that now I was working at a bookstore and seeing all these books on the shelf and one of them wasn’t mine. In my mind I kept saying one day it would there.
An advantage to working at the bookstore was knowing my target audience and how books similar to mine were written. In the two years I worked at the bookstore I gained a wealth of knowledge and built important relationships.
What my (new) editor told me was that my manuscript was edited but not edited correctly. I needed more developmental and content editing. Once I put the manuscript through the ringer two more times I was feeling better about where this thing was headed.
I consulted with my wife and my brother and we agreed that I would self-publish the book. I had self-published before and at this point I just wanted give the people this new project. I felt like it was my best work and it was time to put it out.
I had the ISBN number, the LCCN number, the cover designer, and the book title already picked out.
The tentative release date would be in June or July of 2016.
Everything was lined up perfectly.
Then all hell broke loose….
To be continued…