Friday, December 14, 2012

On the Verge of Puking Before and During THE CALL: That One Time Heather Marie Stared at Her Phone for Two Hours

Isn't that the classiest title ever? I kind of like it. It says it all.

I'm one of those people who get extremely nauseated when overly excited. So imagine how excited I was when I received an email from Michelle Witte on a Sunday. That's right, I said Sunday. One thing I'd gotten accustom to while querying is how everything in the writing world seems to stop from Friday-Sunday. You know how it is. Emails are flooding in, rejection after rejection, Monday through Thursday. But once the weekend arrives it's like everything goes radio silent. You pretty much tell yourself that there's no way you're gonna hear from anyone until that following Monday.

Well, I'm pretty sure I woke my husband up with my squeals when I checked my email that Sunday morning. I couldn't believe it. Of course, I was super nervous at first. I almost didn't want to open it because I didn't want a rejection from THE AGENT I wanted the most to ruin my Sunday. But the way Gmail is set up on the iPhone, you get a sneak peek of the first sentence in the email and I knew immediately I had to open it. The first thing it said was: Do you have time this week to chat? My palms got all sweaty and my stomach did a somersault. I was thinking: No way. No way did this just happen.

Within 24 hours, I pretty much talked to everyone I knew who was a writer. I didn't know what to do or what to ask. Everyone was excited for me, of course, but then they started telling me not to get too excited because sometimes it could be about revisions and possibly no offer at all. I started thinking they could be right and attempted to talk myself down, but it only made me hundred times more nervous.

I hardly slept that night and my phone never left my side. I just stared at it and stared at it like my life depended on it. I'm not even gonna tell you how many times I almost puked because I was so anxious. (Sidenote: It was a lot.) But when the phone started ringing, all the questions I had written down were out the window. Michelle was incredibly kind and so easy to talk to. We chatted about her thoughts on DROWNING BAILEY, and after a while I tried to ask a few questions without it sounding forced, and even though I failed at being nonchalant she was sure to answer all of them.

I think the best thing to do in this situation is to go with your gut. Listen to yourself and ask what YOU want to ask and not what everyone says you should ask. Try not to think so much about it because someone will say one thing and someone else with say another, it leaves you second guessing yourself. I was so completely unsure of myself, afraid of what it would all mean. But in the end you just have to go with it. The best thing to remember is: An agent wouldn't ask to schedule a phone call if they weren't interested. There's a very small percentage that call to talk about R&Rs or even to reject you (though that's rare), but overall they care about your manuscript. And when is that ever a bad thing?
Heather Marie is a YA writer represented by Michelle Witte from Mansion Street Literary. She enjoys writing horror/supernatural stories that make you question that feeling of someone watching over your shoulder. Heather spends most of her days reading and writing and plotting her next idea. When she's not in her writing cave, she enjoys watching creepy TV shows with her husband and picking apart plot holes in movies.
You can find her on Twitter @:
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2 secret replies:

  1. I'm loving this series! These posts are so inspiring. I'm nowhere near having to worry about THE CALL yet, but its good to know that I have a place to go back to when it (hopefully!!!) happens to me :) Finally, I just want to say thanks for starting this blog. Its one of the best I've seen so far (content wise) and also one of the cleanest (design wise). Can't wait to read more!

    1. Thank you so much, Laura! Not only is it fun for us, but we hope to inspire writers like you. We appreciate your support. ;)