June 20th 2016
Today I spent a few hours in Waterstones just completely overwhelmed by the sheer number of books on the shelves. And it wasn’t even a particularly big shop.
I don’t know why but today I noticed just how many printed books there are compared to how few I’ve actually read. Waterstones is my favourite place, because I love buying books. The problem is that at the moment I like buying books more than I like reading them. I used to be able to read three books a week but now I don’t have the time nor concentration span. Saying that, I started a 100,000 word thriller yesterday and I’ve got about 10 pages of it left.
I’m slowly getting back into it, and I have about two dozen unread recent purchases in the book-cupboard above my head.
I didn’t buy any new ones today, I just looked. And it made me feel… hopeful. The sheer number of books in there made me think that a book I write might end up in there one day too. So, from there, I ordered a flat white in the Waterstones cafe and sent off a querying letter to maybe 5 or so literary agents. That brings me up to almost 20 agents queried. I’ve had two rejections, and I’m still waiting on replies for the rest. But it only takes one. One reply and within – i don’t know, however long – I could see myself on the shelves in Waterstones.
Whilst querying agents it’s usually a good idea to find other work they’ve represented, and in doing that I found even more books. There’s loads of them out there. And I’m aware that there are probably just as many (or even more) failed, unpublished and discarded manuscripts out there. But I have the audacity to think that I’m special, and that one day I will be on the shelves at Waterstones. There’s a long way to go, and it might not be with this book, or the next one….
Until tomorrow, one day, maybe, hopefully.