It’s working! The bread-making…and the pitching.
Thanks to my new sourdough obsession, the homestead is heavenly scented. Mmmmmm. I have had a bread machine for years but am now baking “by hand" pretty much every other day and am finding this new regime enormously therapeutic. I also find the allotted time kneading and pottering around the flour-dusted kitchen to be the perfect space to work out solutions in my writing life. Plotting. Planning. Dreaming up new stories.
Oh, and - touch wood, so far the early response to my new MS is very good, though do please whisper this and cross everything for me. We count no chickens in this house.
I have written several times on this blog about rejection and when I tutor short story students, I am absolutely the Queen of positive. That’s a market I seem to have cracked as regular readers will know. But it’s not always easy to practise what you preach in other markets, is it? Not when there is a lot of time and passion on the line.
But we must not complain because we choose this after all. The writer's life is a rollercoaster so let's all just hang on tight…and while I think it’s important to look ahead and not back, I have a teensy confession here. For I do sometimes allow myself a smile during agonising times awaiting feedback on a full MS by pulling out my favourite phrases from some of my past rejections. I’ve kept letters which include - “What a talented writer. I’m sure you’ll sell this” ( we didn’t) and “Teresa will definitely make it as a novelist “ ( er, when????) and more recently – “I can instantly tell you are hugely talented and am so sure you will end up on bookshelves…” (thank you, thank you but forgive me for getting just a little bit impatient...)
Oh the irony. Oh the frustration. Oh the madness of this glorious and completely addictive writer’s life. Who could think of anything more frustrating and more wonderful.
Enjoy your own writing week and if you have ever toyed with the idea of baking bread ( by hand) but not found the time – do please try it. Hugh FW was right. Punching back the dough for the second rise is my personal favourite- especially if you are having a frustrating day. You won’t look back.
Teresa Driscoll - journalist, author, mother of two and lover of great coffee.