Thursday, June 19, 2008

Getting through the day ...

Hmm, it’s a bit like that today. I am lying low, battening down the hatches and attempting not to react in too emotional a fashion to any outside stimulus. Good job I’m at work then, I suppose! In an attempt to counteract the ongoing gentle slide, I’ve doubled my HRT dose and will have to see if that works. I certainly felt a little better last night as I was going to bed, but didn’t really stay awake long enough to see if the feeling continued. Ah well.

This morning, all is strangely blank once more. Plus I’m feeling hugely vulnerable, so much so that today’s inner statement is probably more along the lines of: Yes, you’re probably right – I am rubbish. Sorry, girls. Lord H thinks I was roughly the same last month, so it’s obviously hormonal. Still, knowing the source doesn’t make it any more pleasant, I must say.

I was already feeling rather vulnerable anyway, from my unfortunate attempt to chat to the neighbour’s son in a friendly fashion last night. Well, I won’t be bothering with that again, I thought he was really rather rude. But I was feeling way too weak to fight back, so I just walked off. The idjit probably didn’t notice though – too obtuse. Or maybe he just has the conversational skills of a toad.

And this morning, I’ve chatted to the lovely girls in Catering about sorting out this lunchtime’s meeting – which isn’t one of mine, but I was trying to be supportive anyway. At the end, one of the girls who’d actually bought Thorn in the Flesh some time ago jokingly said she’d managed to sell it on eBay and had got tuppence for it. At least I think she was joking but really, who’s to say. Naturally, I laughed and said something light-hearted as I like her but, to be honest, this sort of thing is hugely more of a knock-back than people imagine. Especially from those who are supposed to be on your side. I’m beginning to think that indeed the minuses vastly outweigh the plusses in this business. As a result, I’m rapidly losing any kind of confidence I once had, and now even if people say how much they enjoy my books, I don’t actually comprehend it. And, looking at it logically, can you blame me? After all, when push comes to shove:

(a) I don’t sell more than 100 books or so of anything, and a significant proportion of these are really no more than gifts to people who don’t want to buy them.

(b) My agent never contacts me, even with bad news – whereas an online friend whose latest novel was sent out at roughly the same time as mine is already meeting the first of two publishers next week. I doubt I’ll hear anything now about The Gifting – in the same way I heard nothing about the Thorn submissions until after a year when I simply had to assume the agent had been unsuccessful. It’s that terrible silence which defeats me.

(c) Until recently, I’ve tried to drum up interest in my work on the Writewords site but I've been less and less successful there – evidently I’m not important enough in what is now a very competitive commercially-focused writing environment. I suspect that I may not last there until my August renewal, to be honest. Hell, even when I add a comment to a thread, nobody now responds. So I’ve given up trying. (That said, a huge thank you to the handful of lovely people who do buy my books from there – I really appreciate that support, but I think you’re a rare breed now!)

And these are only the latest complaints. Sigh! So, why bother? Honestly, I don’t know. I’m increasingly reminded of a former church acquaintance who once told me that he used to love playing golf but had given it up as it had become more of a hindrance than a joy. Food for thought indeed. I do certainly feel that the book business has well and truly defeated me. However, I know I’m cursed by bloody-mindedness: I’ve started Hallsfoot’s Battle so I’m determined to finish one day. But maybe as there’s no-one out there keen to take it, I should just write it when I feel like it. Can’t see that one coming along quickly then!

Hey ho. And I’m still at work, worrying about a meeting at lunchtime when I have to say something intelligent about the Personal Tutors’ handbook, when really I’d much rather not. I’m just not interested. And tonight it’s the Goldenford meeting. When at the moment the feeling is much the same. So it’s a question of getting through the day and doing a heck of a lot of pretending along the way. Double sigh. Best break out that Emergency Chocolate again …

Anne Brooke
Anne's website
Goldenford Publishers

14 comments:

Nik's Blog said...

Aw, hugs, Anne. Sorry to see you're still feeling shitty about things. Actually, I've had that comments ignoring thing too, probably over the last year, so it's not just you.

Hope you're feeling better soon.

Nik xx

Anne Brooke said...

Thanks, Nik. Sorry they're ignoring you too though! Sigh ...

==:O

A
xxx

Nik's Blog said...

I'm sure it's not intentional.

Onwards and upwards!

N

Jilly said...

Hugs Anne - I hope you feel a bit better soon.

Denise said...

Hope the chocolate helped. I got stuck in 2 hours 40 minutes of traffic on the way to work this morning (should take 40 mins) and a packet of chocolate buttons did wonders in my drained state at the end.

This probably isn't the day to make big decisions, but have you thought about getting another agent? That might sound a bit rash but I know someone else whose confidence was almost destroyed by a dis-interested agent. She nearly gave up writing, and although it took her a year to get another one it made all the difference to her confidence. You're a good writer, you could get another agent, believe us when you're having a bad day and don't believe it yourself!

Blogger made me write "poo" as part of the word verification! Well, it made me laugh...

Anne Brooke said...

Thanks, guys - much appreciated. And 2 hours plus of traffic sounds like a nightmare. At least 2 bags of buttons for that, Denise. Ye gods!!!

Must admit my agent is the only one in the known universe brave enough to take me on - bet he's regretting it now! Believe me, I tried everyone else! I don't think I could go through that again ...

==:O

Hugs & stuff

A
xxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Irene Black said...

Hope we didn't grind you down too much last night, Anne. As usual you took on the onerous task of minuting the meeting. And as we all talk (shout) at once I appreciaate that it's a headache inducing task for which, as always, we're truly grateful. This writing business can be lonely and miserable, but Goldenford Girls stick together, that's what I say! We're there to prop each other up (as well as sell books!!!)

Hugs

Irene

Anne Brooke said...

Just couldn't keep up!!! Hope I've got it all - all good stuff though, but everyone talks so fast!! Will make an effort at beginning this afternoon, but must prop myself up with lunch first.

:))

Hugs

A
xxx

Sarah Hilary said...

Anne, you can't stop believing in your books or writing them. Purely from a selfish point of view, you're my heroine because you're one of the few authors I know who writes what she damn well likes, to please herself and her loyal readers without angsting about the bigger world that blights ALL books. Reading your blog is my tonic - you always sound so sane and free from hang-ups and so happy in your goals and achievements. I get kind of sick of reading about the issues that other authors fret over (I'm including myself here), the Will I make it? What if I don't? world of commerical publishing. You have a rare faith and focus, please don't let the b*stards grind you down.

Anne Brooke said...

Sane and free from hang-ups?!??!!? Oh God, I wish, Sarah, I wish!! Though, to be fair, it's the hang-ups that keep me together. I thought you were the sane one!

But thank you for the pep-talk. You are now officially my Life/Writing Coach - a role for which commiserations are probably more in order than congratulations, I fear! And you're right too. Why is everyone so much wiser than me?? I'd rush off now and write something totally unpublishable - that'll show 'em!

Love and hugs

A
xxxxxxxxxx

Sarah Hilary said...

Atta girl! And hey - at least your slash gets published! Mine is hidden away in the depths of cyberspace waiting to catch me out if I ever I try and convince someone I'm a "mainstream" writer - ha!

Anne Brooke said...

Slash!! You have secret slash!!!??!! Publish it at once! Your first reader is banging at the door with her purse well & truly open, tee hee!!

:))

A
xxx

Sarah Hilary said...

(pst, Anne, are you on LiveJournal??) Too much of my slash is fanfic...

*slinks off in shame*

Anne Brooke said...

Ooh, I am indeed, though I don't blog there any more - ww-mail me your link!! No idea why you're slinking off either - come back at once!!

:))

A
xxx