April 26th, 2011

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Some Things I'm Thinking About

I had a minor panic attack yesterday. It felt like it hit me out of nowhere, but really, as all panic attacks do, it built up over time. Lucky me, I know how to hold onto things and let them fester (Go me). This one was a combination of things - a family member I love is pretty sick and the news seems to get worse everyday. That awful rejection letter from last week. Struggling on my diet. All kinds of stuff was coming at me and it turns out that I really wasn't handling it as well as I thought.

The funny thing is, it wasn't another bad thing that put me over the edge. It was a good thing. A potentially (not to get ahead of myself) really good thing. I got really nice response from an agent agreeing to read my book, the kind that makes me insanely hopeful, even when I try to be realistic and not let my dreams of literary glory get too out of control. It had some nice praise for a previous version of my book. I should have been jumping up and down, but, instead, my heart started beating too fast and I couldn't catch my breath, and I got extremely claustrophobic. Like - I had to ask my boss if I could leave because my office has no windows-claustrophobic. 

I think because I just don't want to be disappointed again. I can take rejection like a pro these days (last week's example aside), but when someone says nice things, it's almost painful. I'm not sure I'm going to explain this right, but rejection for a subjective reason like, "just not my taste" doesn't bother me. But when they say something nice, but ultimately say no, they can't represent my book, it can really easily feel like I've been set up to fail. And I really do not want to fail.

Today I'm trying to remind myself that I wrote a great book, and that if this agent doesn't turn out to be the one for me, I still have no reason to stop trying to find one. Because, fact is, I want it too much and I will make it happen.

Of course, I could be completely bonkers. I'll take my chances.