Sometimes You Just Give Up

I have.
On more than one occasion.
Ask my CPs Kim and Lori. They have the tortured emails from me to prove it.

October 3

I’m at that point where I’ve put so much time and energy into it that lead nowhere that I just don’t want anything to do with it. I swear I don’t ever want to query again.

October 25

I still think it’s a great story for younger middle grade, but we’ll see. I’m not getting my hopes up again.

November 14

I give up.
Seriously.

But a funny thing happened in the depths of depression.

I found hope.
By encouraging someone else who was down.

November 21

I have to believe that persistence and luck are the only ingredients missing for us right now so we just have to keep trying and not be one of the people who gives up because it WILL happen. Hopefully before we’re dead.

She wrote back:

You are right, of course you are. I think I just need a break from the submissions, for a bit. Anyway, sorry to bum you out.

I responded:

Oh, you didn’t bum me out. I’ve been depressed for a while. But the funny thing is, after I emailed you, I sent out another query. It had been sitting in my query folder for a few days. I just wasn’t sure if I should send any more out. Writing that note to you reminded me that I can’t give up no matter how depressing it gets. Beth Revis wrote ten books before she found an agent. Cindy Pon queried 121 people with the same story before landing her agent. So yes, it’s hard, and yes, we’ll go through periods of hating the process, hating going through this torture. But in the end it will pay off…

Let me tell you people, that ONE more query I sent out…it paid off.

The agent wrote back the next day to say she liked the chapter I’d included with my query and wanted to read more.

One week later, she emailed to ask if we could talk on the phone.

She could probably hear my squeals in New York!

Yesterday we had a wonderful conversation.

And I am now the newest client of Michelle Humphrey at International Creative Management.
Did you see that? Let me make it easier to read…
I am the newest client of Michelle Humphrey at International Creative Management!!!

I don’t think I’ll ever get tired of saying that! Β 
And trust me — between 4:05 p.m. yesterday and right now, I’ve said it a LOT of times πŸ˜€

Lesson learned? Even when you’re at the bottom and it’s hard and you think you’ve given up, you can’t. Try again. Send out one more query. Take one more chance.

It could make all the difference.

100 thoughts on “Sometimes You Just Give Up

  1. OH MY GOODNESS, CONGRATS!!!! There aren't enough CAPS LOCK and exclamation marks for this, and I don't want to hurt your eyes. πŸ˜€

    Funny how the universe delivers sometimes when you're super down. CONGRATS AGAIN!!!

  2. Um, so Sherrie, apparently while I was having a bad day and then taking a NAP, you were announcing this amazing news! SQUEEE!!!!

    So, so, SO incredibly happy for you. Congratulations!!

  3. YEAH, BABY!

    Such a wonderful post, and you SO deserve to be represented and have your writing all over the planet!

    Enormous hugs and a few shimmies,
    ~Thalia

  4. Yea! I've been a follower but not a commenter, but this has to be the exception. Congratulations, this is great news for someone who is always positive and supportive of other writers.

  5. Sherrie, yea, yea, yea!!! I am so happy for you. And you are dead on right. Never give up!

    Great post. We can tell you are a wonderful writer.

    Doing the happy dance!

  6. OMGoodness, Sherrie! Congratulations! What wonderful news! I'm so excited for you. Even more good things are on your way. (happy dance)

    I hope you and your family are out having a wonderful celebration this weekend!

  7. I have tears in my eyes I am so HAPPPPPPPPPYYYYY for you!!!! Huge congrats! I couldn't be happier if it was me. You deserve it and I am SO thrilled you never gave up! In fact you inspired me to keep on keeping on…

    Yay!! Happy dancing for you!!!!

  8. I just found your blog from Shrinking Violet. First of all huge congratulations on your signing with an agent. That's so exciting. Also Thank you so much for your post about not giving up. What a wonderful story. I find myself re-energized!

  9. Sorry I didn't make it over here earlier! I had such a busy weekend. I've already congratulated you, but here I go again! CONGRATS! I hope your book sells quickly and you get on shelves fast because I'd love to read the book. πŸ˜€

  10. what an amazing story!!! HUGE congratulations!!!
    I just LOVE how you layed out the events and emails that led to that one more query. So WONDERFUL!!!
    I know the feeling of the amazement of finally finding the perfect agent!!!!
    I'm so happy for you!!!

  11. Hi Sherrie, I came over from Susan's blog to give you a hearty congratulations!!! How incredibly awesome to have a dream come true!!! And you keep saying those words, you've earned them!!! I read your first chapter btw and LOVED it! (-:

    Nice to meet you girl and best of luck!!!

  12. OMG! I'm so sorry I'm late to the joyous news!

    CONGRATS!!!βœ©β˜†βˆ΄*β˜…βˆ΅βˆΆο½‘β—¦Β°βœ°*Β¨*β€’.ΒΈΒΈ β˜†βˆ΄*β˜…βˆ΅βˆΆο½‘β—¦Β°βœ°*Β¨*β€’.¸¸✩ β‹°Λšβ˜†

    I feel so sad that you were that depressed about it before. But I love the way you shared your news…the honesty.

  13. Congratulations, Sherrie! I came over here from Jackee's post. It's heartening to see another writer's hard work paying off, isn't it. I loved Beth Revis's story.

    Best of luck with the next stage of the game! I keep reading that luck is one of the vital ingredients πŸ˜‰

  14. Wow, congratulations! And such an inspiring story to share with those of us still slogging along. I love hearing about how writers got their agents, and when there's some adversity mixed in it's always that much sweeter. Thanks for sharing!

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