Not All Sunshine and Rainbows

I was recently e-mailing with one of my friends, and it came up in the conversation that she felt things seemed so easy for authors once they have a book deal. Which I completely understand. It really does appear that way most of the time, doesn't it? Once a writer gets the ball rolling, it's like they have three more books coming out in the next few years. 

But the truth is, not everything is perfect behind the curtain. 

Because we can't blog about our specific problems or tweet for advice, authors often go to each other. Sometimes it's to vent, other times it's to find a solution. What problems could these possibly be, you ask? Honestly, I've seen a variety of them. Authors whose second book wasn't accepted by their publisher, authors who were stressing about deadlines, authors who wished they had a better relationship with their editors. Of course, these may seem like good problems to have. But to the author who's tearing her hair out and losing sleep, it's just as serious as getting another agent rejection. 

I've already blogged about my own difficulties in getting a book deal. Maybe it seems like everything is perfect now. Which, okay, I'm pretty happy with everything that's going on in my life. However, there have still been difficulties. No one knows that I sent my agent an entire manuscript - I'd worked on it for months, and it was a monster at over 100,000 words - and she ultimately helped me see that it just wasn't working. Since then I've dived into other projects and moved on, but at the time, it was so hard to give up. 

See, authors don't usually share things like that.

It's not always sunshine and rainbows, whatever it looks like. Sometimes it rains.

The purpose of this post isn't to whine, or seek sympathy. It may even seem unfair to those who are still struggling in the query or submission trenches. The simple purpose of this post is to assure - if that's the right word - my friend and all of you that even after the dreams come true, there are battles. Authors don't write flawless manuscripts and have a deal within days. It's hard work. Always, continually, constantly. Sometimes we succeed, sometimes we don't.

Just like that time we sent out a single query, and that one agent replied with those terrifying-wonderful words. 

I want more.