Say “Yes” to Your Writing!

A very accomplished author friend of mine recently sent me an email in which she told me she’d just received a contract for a picture book. She mentioned how relieved she was, after months of waiting, to finally have a new contract.

An illustrator friend (with more than fifty books to his credit) told me that the editors he works with won’t even take his calls if they’re not ready to commit to a project. They just keep him waiting, and wondering. “That’s just the way they do business,” he said.

There’s a lot of buzz among writers about how long it takes to hear back from editors and how often the only reward for waiting is a form letter saying “no thanks”.  It’s frustrating . . . no, it’s beyond frustrating. It’s downright annoying!

So what is an anxious writer to do?

Write. Revise. Submit. Wait. Write. Revise. Submit again.

Because as tough as it is to have to wait for someone else to say “yes”, if you don’t ask for “yes” by continuing to write and submit, then you’re saying “no” to  yourself.


About kimgriswell

I'm an author, an editor, a writing coach, and a workshop leader. I spend my days asking questions and looking (or listening) for answers, and thinking up ideas for new stories to write for my favorite audience: kids! I guess I'm just about as curious as Rufus Leroy Williams III, the intrepid pink hero of my picture book series from Sterling Publishing, is persistent. Did you know that in 5000 B.C. people blamed 'tooth worms' for their cavities? Neither did I until I developed THE HAUNTED OUTHOUSE for the Bathroom Reader's Institute. Turns out, ancient dentists filled the wormholes with metals like gold or silver. Except the Aztecs. They used a mix of iron, water, and belly-button lint. As you'll discover by reading RUFUS GOES TO SCHOOL, RUFUS GOES TO SEA, and RUFUS BLASTS OFF! I believe that reading opens up worlds for young people. Books did that for me, and I hope my books will do the same for today's kids.
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2 Responses to Say “Yes” to Your Writing!

  1. Kathy Doherty says:

    The waiting game is hard. The first few times I submitted, I was tied to the mailbox especially at that three month mark. And the rejection form letters caused tears. But my skin has thickened. Now I find the more I submit, the more I can forget what’s circulating and go on with life.


  2. kimgriswell says:

    That’s it! If you’re writing instead of sitting by the mailbox, then you’re focused on creating rather than putting all of your energy toward something you can’t control. What you can control is your improving your skills by writing more and more! Then you have more to submit and the odds of getting to “yes” begin to improve. You have an attitude for success, Kathy! Thanks for sharing.


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