On the road to publication, it is all about the waiting. You work months, years, maybe even a decade or two to write the perfect novel, and when you're finally ready to get published, it should just happen.
Newsflash: It. Doesn't. Just. Happen.
How do I know? Well, I wrote my first middle grade novel in a month. It was lovely and would be worth millions (I seriously believed that). I sent it off to the big houses and waited. Six months later, I received form rejections from a few of them, and never heard back from most. Okay, so then I decided I needed to learn the ins and outs of the publishing business. I learned about SCBWI (Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators), so I joined that and quickly learned there was a conference coming up!
That was the Spring of 2005.
Six years and two other novels later I'm still attending conferences. Still sending out manuscripts. Still waiting. For that moment.
This past spring (May 2010), I was blessed with several agents interested in my second novel (my first novel is in my file cabinet for the time being). All of a sudden everything happened at once. I chose Marissa Walsh from FinePrint Literary. She took my young adult novel and worked with me until it was this amazing manuscript. The total rewrites took almost six months.
So I'm published now, right?
So if you are just getting into working on this dream of writing and hoping that one day your work will be published, or you've been in the trenches for years. Keep your chin up. You're not alone.