Thursday, September 27, 2007

This See-saw Called a Writer's Life

I got home Saturday from a friend’s wedding to find a yellow envelope laying on my kitchen counter. I knew who it was from and since it was awfully skinny, I decided that I should just bite the bullet and open that puppy up. I did and it plummeted me down in the dumps…really way down there. It was a rejection letter (a personal one) from Adam Wilson at Red Dress Ink saying he’d decided to pass on BLITZ ME BABY. But atleast I didn’t cry. I really…really wanted too, but didn’t. However I did indulge in some comfort food.

Then Sunday, mail magically materialized in my box. I know it sounds strange, but I don’t know how it got there cause the USPS doesn’t deliver on Sunday. Anyhow, I looked at the return labels and expected to find Moonlight & Magnolia (M&M) conference info inside from two different volunteers. What I found was way more cool! It seems that my feedback as a Maggie judge actually helped contestants! Nicki Salcedo and Barbara Cool Lee both wrote fabulous thank you notes that lifted my spirits. (And I later found out via the FF&P Loop that one of the ladies’ is a finalist in the On the Far Side contest with the same entry I read.) This may sound corny, but this marked the first time out of judging 5 contests, I got kudos from the participants!

Then Monday I found out I wasn’t a semi-finalist in the First Chapters Romance contest. Okay, I knew it was going to be a long shot at 400 manuscripts to 25 slots, but I still had hope. Call me crazy…I often do. :0) But I do have three people I befriended (including a local chaptermate among the lucky 25. So I’m not running over with mirth at my crummy luck, and I’m thinking “Hmmm…maybe this manuscript is hoo-ha.” But then I snap my self back to reality and recall it’s all subjective!! My manuscript simply has to click with one person…which occasionally falls into place like all the planets aligning in TMNT.

So I’m hoping that the see-saw will bounce back up, because I really can’t stay in this pit…okay, puddle…of despair and expect to rock M&M this weekend! It would help if I knew who I was pitching too, but the name of the game is learning to adapt. All the best go-getters are masters of reorganizing on the fly. (Dare I intervene to say that so far this week’s schedule hasn’t run to plan?) So I will have to prepare as best I can to make a fabulous appearance. And the scariest thing is….I’ll have to talk to people. (Yes, put me in the shy/non-small talker group!) In order to atone for missing my little brother’s wedding; I’ll have to make the most of every opportunity. How else can I justify not being there on his special day?

Since today’s the day I’m shoving off for M&M just outside of Atlanta, I decided to treat you all with another glimpse at BLITZ ME BABY (which I will hopefully be pitching successfully). Here’s page 27:

“You could stand him up.”

“I can’t.” Afra sighed. “It’s not good business. Maybe if I hold up my end this whole snafu will stalemate.”

Missy snorted. “And I’ll fall madly in love with a spider.”

That’d never happen. Arachnophobia should’ve been Misha’s middle name. “I can take care of myself.”

“Don’t say I didn’t warn you,” Missy tutted, retreating to her office. “And it’s no problem about me staying.” The black cloud of worry lifted, her face brightening at another chance to earn her wings quicker. Missy exuded heady with responsibility the way her head cocked to the side and her eyes fixated far off in the distant If-I-Were-Boss dreamland.

It triggered the cold sprinkle reminder. “Just remember…”

“Answer only the situations I can handle. Gotcha!” Missy called from behind her desk, poised with her headset in hand. With the roving mic she could be anywhere and stay connected, including downstairs glued to her favorite weeknight game shows.

She’d let Eric’s shock-jock rumors speed in one ear then out the other and gotten seared well-done. Next go-round she’d be packing self-checked facts. Wiggling her mouse, Afra grinned at her anime-styled wallpaper. Her scantily robed namesake pinned her with a what-have-you-done-for-me-lately stare that summed up all her vixen glory in a nutshell. This visual call to arms always got her psyched in a heartbeat.

Her first stop was Shot With An Arrow—E. Ross’s fan club website. From memory she punched in the website emblazoned on his followers t-shirts.

A digitize cupid launched a golden arrow that landed with a midi thunk through a heart. Cute, but not exactly what she’d expected. A flurry of pixels fluttered across the screen, firming into a picture.

Oh my God! Make that demi-god.

Eric offered every plus or minus eighteen-year-old visitor a come-hither stare, his golden curls boyishly disheveled to fall deliberately over one eye. A slick, sweaty sheen covered his rock hard torso making his tanned six-pack glow. One streaming moisture bead had been frozen in time and its suggestive path drew an imaginary beeline for his barely-there jock strap.

Her mouth watered.

Unable to resist, she traced the elastic strap’s line over a firm bun bearing a playful football tattoo.


Bernadette Gardner and Jennifer Colgan said...

Congrats and consolations, Skylar. Sometimes I wonder how we can stand this roller coaster life. Fortunately the sucky parts are usually tempered with a bit of good news.

Cassandra Kane said...

It'll happen, Skylar. Just keep plugging away. I read a Nora Roberts interview where she said: "It's meant to be hard." Don't know if that's any kind of consolation ;-) but I think it means victory will be so much sweeter when you get there.

MK Mancos/Kathleen Scott said...

I got rejected from Avon today for a contemporary I wrote. I'm starting to think this branching out business is not in the stars for me. Good luck at M and M.


Skylar Masey said...

Thanks Jenn & Cassandra! I'll keep at it!

So sorry to hear about your rejection from AVON. :0\ Hang in there. Sometimes you just have to find the right fit.

BTW, here at M&M I got my first pick of editor/agent!!! I get to sit down with Kate Duffy on Saturday morning!! And they're having a huge number of raffles for editor/agent/pubbed author critiques with the money collected to benefit literacy. So all in all things are going well! Plus I've been talking to people :0) And then there was the hot tall, dark & handsome stranger in the elevator with a sexy accent! Lol!

Skylar Masey said...

Hey All!

Just wanted to say that I got a request for FULL from my pitch session this morning. Thank goodness that was before I got a tea shower from the server at lunch.

Off to buy some books for literacy!

Cassandra Kane said...

Just saw this. Yay to you!

Skylar Masey said...

Thanks Cassandra! I was pumped by the request, as well as her comment on my pitch--"I hope the book is as good as your pitch." Here's hoping Kate thinks so.