Limbo Land. A place writers know all too well.
We spend hours writing, waiting to reach The End.
We share our work with our critique partners and eagerly await their feedback.
We send out contest entries, queries, book proposals. And we wait.
Then comes that monumental day when we sign a contract, and we expect life to take off at warp speed. For those who have only a few months between contract and release that can be true, but others wait to find out what happens next.
During a call with my agent, I referred to this period of uncertainty as Limbo Land. Eager for assurance that I was heading in the right direction while I wait for the next step on my journey, I asked her to share some of her sage counsel.
What she gave me was a dose of reality. She told me waiting is part of the writing life and that doesn’t change after we sign a contract. She said a writer can plan to spend 90% of her time living in Limbo Land, waiting for something, waiting on someone.
My agent went on to give me some advice I’d heard before but which hadn’t sunk in.
The best way to deal with waiting time is to work on the next project. Keep writing so when we’re asked for a new story or another book proposal, we have one ready.
Heeding my agent’s advice worked wonders. I was transported from Limbo Land to Possibility Paradise. Ideas began to flow, and I couldn’t wait to get to work.
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Have you spent time in Limbo Land, unsure how to proceed. How did you handle it?
What are your best tips for dealing with waiting time?