Midwifery.Posted: June 3, 2012
I went to New York to meet literary agents to represent my first novel, The Girl in the Road. I came back empty-handed—despite wonderful connections with wonderful people, I didn’t choose one. I decided to revise the novel on my own, incorporating the conflicting feedback I got from several agents, making the novel even better, and then resubmit.
I wanted badly to commit.
But I’m recommitting to the book itself, for now. She’s worth it.
I can at least say that this whole process has been really reassuring. Sometimes it feels like enough to be told that you haven’t wasted five years writing a novel. It’s mind-blowing to be told things like the book was “beautifully realized,” “constantly surprising,” and that I “write like Margaret Atwood.” (The last from the agency that, um, represents Margaret Atwood.)
In other words, the process gave me the confidence to defer. My position can only get better. Even if I have to wait. Meanwhile, I’m really, really excited to go back to it now—the novel can only become more perfectly itself, and I am her midwife.