For those of you who aspire to publish your writing, you know what THE CALL is. And for my friends who don’t (those of you who prefer sports, math, and other topics I don’t understand, but am grateful you do), it’s when a literary agent rings your phone and shocks the holy hell out of you with an offer of representation.
Yes, with THE CALL you, too, can have cache into the world of book publishing and rise above the slush pile. Book editors will look at your submission before they stick their hands into the depths of unsolicited manuscripts. This is gold for any writer who is serious about their craft. Not to mention that a good agent is your main man when it comes to negotiating sales contracts, rights, and other doo-dads we writers wish we had the patience to understand (like sports, math, oh you know already!).
THE CALL is almost mythical lore in the world of online writing boards. There is a want, a need, a lust for it. Once it is received, it is as if all blood in the veins turns to platinum and dreams about unicorns and fairies come true. Well, at least that is what it seems like. Actually, THE CALL appears to generate panic attacks, heart palpitations, extreme nausea, and flipping out in public — all good things when connected to what the writer desires most.
So, what do you do after THE CALL? You wait for more calls, receive more rejections (hey, it ain’t over at query, folks), and eventually more THE CALLS, hopefully with book deals resounding across the phone lines.
Getting to THE CALL and beyond can either be a stressful event or a tasty morsel in the game of book publishing. If you’re waiting on queries and partials — or even better, full submissions — take joy in the process. Try to have fun with it. And keep yourself as happy as can be that you, too, could very well be receiving THE CALL sometime soon.
Writing is an art. Publishing is a business. And dreams are fulfilled when the two meet to bring a book to fruition.