First, I want to thank you all for all your encouraging comments on Monday's post. I really was just grappling with the strange feeling of confidence in my work - but you all heard my worry, and sent me support, and I REALLY appreciate that. Really.
Now, for today's post.
A few weeks ago, I told you about coming to peace with my WiP, CHROME, being a different story. It might take longer to write, and be a fundamentally different process. And that has to be okay.
Even though I had already admitted the stark difference of the book to myself, when I hit about 10-15K words on I realized another something that felt quite strange, a sense of the book itself that has taken me some time to grow into:
No one's screaming for futuristic sci-fi retellings of Bible stories.
So, I have no idea if this concept, or genre, or whatever it is, is marketable at all.
A funny thing happened when I realized that I can't realistically expect this book to go anywhere.
(Given that I don't know whether people actually WANT books like this, I mean.)
I didn't stop writing the book.
After all, I don't have an agent to recommend that I write only What's Marketable.
(Though if I were to get The Email, you know, TODAY, I would drop Chrome like a bad habit and work on WHATEVER YOU WANT DREAM AGENT. Do you hear me???)
So, instead of thinking about querying CHROME and getting all hopeful and excited....
I think about querying and shrug my shoulders.
Saying "I don't care" is too...vague of a statement.
I care enough to write it well, to send it to CPs, to revise revise revise and shine and spit-polish.
(That's my plan, anyway - I'm still drafting.)
And I sure as heck am going to write a query that makes it sound as marketable as possible.
In other words - I'm going to try, really, really hard, to get this book to sell.
But if it doesn't? That'll be okay. And it's the first time I could really, truthfully say that about a WiP.
And I think that's because this story is mine. All mine. I want to be proud of it, but....
And if no one else loves it, that won't make me love it any less.
No (or minimal) potential for heartbreak or resentment = NO FEAR.
I wish I could query (and write) all my projects like this - fearlessly. It feels good, somehow.
(But I really, really do want to write something that attracts an agent and, please God, a publisher. Someday. I'm just not expecting this to be the book to do it.)
What about you, sweet readers? Have you ever poured your writer's heart and soul into a piece that you knew, from the outset, you were just writing for yourself? One that might sell, sure, but who really knows? How did it feel?