I've been spending more and more of my time on Twitter , and because of that I've been lucky enough to chat with more than a few literary agents, publishers, editors and what have you.
And they have subsequently scared the bejeezus out of me.
Jesus Christ on a Crutch, they can be terribly scary people (Unless they are planning on representing, publishing, etc. me, in which case, total kittens. All of them.)
If you've ever met me, you'd know that I've got a set of brass plated balls the size of Miami, and it takes a special kind of person to give me pause. They've managed to do it.
Their blogs and tweets are intimidating to say the least, especially if you're a newer writer. It's always a new blog post on what some other writer did terribly wrong, as a lesson to the rest of us. I suppose they aren't paid to be sunshine and butterflies, and I'm sure a good majority of their day is filled with sifting through misspelled bullshit. At the same time, for a writer who is wet behind the ears, they can be the most terrifying people on earth.
Common sense says if you have a good idea/manuscript/proposal/set of boobs you should have no problem presenting it to an agent. Common sense also says I should stop wearing five inch heels three weeks after I broke three of my toes, but you don't see me doing that either.
My proposal is an adaptation of a piece I wrote that was published internationally, has had over a million readers on my dinky little blog alone, and has a following on Facebook that's 40,000 strong. (Forty-thousand people! Humbling, really.) I know that my book will be faboosh, and even better, marketable.
Knowing that doesn't make it any less intimidating sending it off to industry professionals to tear apart though.
The truth is, writing a proposal for other people to tear apart is scary. Writing a book is entirely more personal than I had ever anticipated, and at some level, it's really difficult to separate myself from the manuscript. It becomes an extension of yourself, and the idea of putting that out there so other people can judge it makes me incredibly nervous. However it's par the course, and I'm alright with that. I'd be concerned if it didn't scare me. Good things can be scary. Good things that can get you out of a shitty job and into a position where you can do something you love every day can be worse.
Now if you'll excuse me, I have a proposal to finish and a Zanax to take.