This afternoon I found out that the e-portal was closed to new submissions, and wrote a post here.
Since then, Harper Voyager apologised for the technical glitch and I have now officially submitted my novel to them.
A month ago, only my mum had read my work. And only half a novel’s worth. Today, I submitted a novel to a publisher.
However, the points I made below are still true, so I’ll leave the original post here.
* * * * * * * * *
Last night, the submission portal at Harper Voyager Publishing closed to un-agented manuscripts.
I didn’t make it.
* * *
The website said 1st – 14th October, opening at 00:01 on Monday the 1st.
Like so many, I assumed that would mean it would close at 23:59 Sunday – not 23:59 Saturday.
They were asking for polished pieces, which mine isn’t. (Well, the first half is relatively polished.) But I knew it wouldn’t hurt to send it off – in case a miracle happened.
I didn’t get that chance.
* * *
But I have a finished novel.
And a query letter. And an idea of how to write a synopsis.
I joined a new writing community; which although I find faults with the limits for a free membership (and can’t afford such a high price for paid), gave me access to about 10 people’s views on my work.
I had access to other people’s query letter formats. And examples of my ‘competition’ specific to my genre.
I got to share my work with my mum; something I was too afraid to do before.
I got to share the journey with my friend and fellow author.
And I wrote 18,500 words in five days. Despite having no idea how this re-write would end.
I turned a 31,000 re-write draft into an 80,000 word completed piece in less than a month. And I have a foundation for a sequel – possibly my nanowrimo piece for this year.
My last “completed novel” is 92,000 words; but full of plot holes. Some chapters still have “add scene about X here” in them. And I hate how the plot is going.
* * *
For this novel, I found a way to push through the hatred for my own characters, after forcing myself to write through periods of desolation. I was home alone for a week with my writing, and I still ate vegetables alongside the extra junk food. I didn’t drink alcohol, despite wanting to most of the time (all the best writers did). I learned that making a mental appointment with my muse actually seems to WORK.
Through sharing my chapters, I found that I can write, and that people like my work.
Through sharing my chapters, I found that I read other people’s work and began to hate my writing. It wasn’t as good as theirs.
Through sharing my chapters, I was able to change the bits I hated and found I almost liked it again.
Now I’m looking at NaNoWriMo ideas for the sequel.
It seems that for this week at least, I found a way to be a writer.