I’m well aware my decision to forsake traditional publishing puts a glass ceiling over any writing career I might have, and I’m good with it. I’m even better after what happened today.
I want to state up front this is not a diatribe about agents. Agents have it tough now. The foundations of their business are set in quicksand and they’re getting squeezed on one side by publishers who want more out of authors all the time and on the other side by authors who think a book contract will buy them a villa in Capri. The agent I’m about to discuss is highly respected by everyone I know, including me. We’ve met, shared a couple of drinks in a small group, and my writing has always received a fair hearing. This rejection was complimentary, written with tact, and I have no quibble with the assessment.
It did, however, take the agent seven months to get around to it.
To me, that says more on the state of publishing than it does about this agent, and I’m too old for this bullshit. I’m fifty-five, and life is too short to live on gossamer-thin hopes that take the better part of a year to spin out. I don’t burn like I did as a young musician. I enjoy my quiet time more than I used to, and I’ve paid enough life dues that I don’t feel the need to wait indefinitely for someone to tell me to jump so I can ask how high.
I understand my path is not the way to fame and fortune; I’m not recommending it to others who may have different goals than I.
On the other hand, I’ve never missed a deadline, and I doubt I will.