Monday, December 26, 2005

knocked one off the must-do list

I just ran my book project past an agent, electronically. I should know if she bites within a month. The form calls it a "quick query", which is a lie; while it didn't take as long as writing my intro and sample chapter did, it was still more laborious than is probably wise at four in the morning.

Because last night a friend, in the course of chastising me for something else, started asking me difficult questions like what are you afraid of? and why are you compromising? and what do you really want? He was sort of talking about work and sort of talking about love, and I suppose there is not that much difference between those things, really. A point I am too drained to clarify just at the moment.

I am going to call you on the 30th when I get back into town, he warned me, and the first thing I'm going to ask is if you've written to any agents. And I didn't want to have to hang my head on the 30th.

So after he left I called up the table of contents I'd gone over so many times, and the author bio, and boiled things down and talked things up; tried to express a self-assurance about the project that I haven't felt since it got shot down. The first time. Nabokov showed Lolita to twenty-seven publishers before someone would take a chance on it. The guy who invented Scrabble tried for seventeen years to get someone to buy it from him. I care about this project and I will keep putting it in front of people until someone says yes.

Which I guess is a lot like love too.