Hunting for publishers is just NOT a linear process—it is multi-directional information OVERLOAD.
…and you know how I love to be linear when it comes to accomplishing a task! [Note: nonlinear mode when creating is just fine. It’s necessary. Even fun!]
When hunting for publishers, I find, there are fields … acres and acres of them, simply littered with rabbit holes to go down. Fall down? Plummet head first? Deep, dark, twisting, rambling rabbit holes. Who knows where I will surface?
This morning’s goal:
Find 10 potential publishers for my haiku book, Where I Go Walking: Vermont Haiku Around the Year, to add to my orderly, linear table of publishers in Google Docs, so that I can continue to send this manuscript out!
Seems easy enough, right??
I emerge, dazed, hours later. All the blood has drained from my rear end from sitting in one position; my neck is permanently craned forward. I pry my teeth apart to take a deep breath.
My brain is scrambled. So many jigs and jags—online journals that publish haiku, broken links to presses that no longer exist, windows and deadlines for submissions, haughty book reviews, snarky submission guidelines that talk down to writers as if they were only ten years old or lack any meaningful education whatsoever. Lofty proclamations of what “good” haiku should look like. Tantalizing retreats in forested places to study haiku … images of steaming coffee, literati hobnobbing, smell of pine, consciousness-elevating conversations … Oh, wait. That’s maybe for next summer. Back to the task at hand.
Three hours and twenty-two minutes later, I now have added only ONE new possible publisher to my list. Really? Oh, and 6 online journals with submission details, because, well, if I am any good, of course, I DO need to submit to those regularly as well now. And I bought two more books to read, adding to the already teetering piles on desks and coffee tables around my house.
My heart feels squished. The Imposter Syndrome looms large. Who am I anyway? Is this even worth my time? Who cares?? I just wasted so much time. My Sunday afternoon.
Suddenly I want to go and pull weeds from the garden, feel my fingers in the dirt. Feel the cold wind on my face.
My manuscript turns over in my desktop file folder and yawns.