Wednesday, October 31, 2012

When you get some R&R

Here's the thing. R&R makes me think of two drastically different things. One is this:

But that's not the R&R we're talking about today. Today, let's discuss what happens when you've gotten past the querying and form rejections. You've got a decent manuscript, an engaging plot and a killer first 250--and it's landing requests. YAY! *throws confetti*

Okay, so that's all lovely, buuuuutttt... (Why, you ask, why do you harsh my mellow. Well, I answer, YOU came to the blog. You had to know it wasn't gonna ALL be happy, chocolate and thrown confetti)
You've been a good little writer, and buckled down with a new WIP while waiting for word from agents reading partials or even *gasp* fulls. Time passes. And the responses start rolling in.
Pass. Happy thought happy thought, here's the problem, send it if you revise.
BUCK UP! your CP's say (okay, not really, cuz who SAYS that anymore) At least they liked it. And you could revise.
But you aren't ready--something doesn't quite sit right. So you wait and another response comes in.
Pass. Happy though, happy thought, here's the problem, PLEASE send if you revise.
And now, your miffed. Because TWO agents? Really? Again, though, you don't quite revise. Your working your head around the problem, working on the WIP, and come on, lets be honest--other agents in the sea, and who WANTS to revise?
Here's what I know about Revise and Resubmit's from agents. They mean it. And sometimes, it's not right--the change they've suggested isn't right for the story YOU are trying to tell. Which is when you make a note of the agent for your WIP and you move on.
But more often than not? They're right. And the suggestion can be painful, and yeah--going back into the revision cave sucks, but...what if it makes the book better?
Here's a bit of a story for you. Last year, I got a full request from my top-choice agent for that particular manuscript. I was so excited, and nervous and a few months later, she sent me a revise and resubmit. And I was a bit disappointed, but I took some time, then threw myself into revisions. Three months later, I sent it back. And eventually, she passed.
And that's the downside. What happens when you get a R&R, you do the work required to properly revise, and's still a no? Because it DOES happen and it's a little soul crushing.
Which is actually a fear I expressed to one of my CPs when I got a FOURTH R&R. And here's what she said (cuz she's smart and shit.) "Well, you'll still have a better book."
And I was like, duuuddeee. Why can't her smart rub off on MEEEE??? Because it's quite simple, y'all. The agent, the contract, the book on a bookshelf and front display at BN, ALL THAT? It's the goal, but the REAL goal should be a better book. THE BEST BOOK.
So. I have four R&R's. And since I want THE BEST BOOK, I'm headed into the revision cave. Which looks something like this:

Have you had an R&R? Share with us in the comments!!


  1. Yay! Congrats on the R&R - even if it's not an offer, it's confirmation that your MS is good!

    I've had two R&Rs so far and I'm still waiting to hear back on whether or not my revisions were what the agents were looking for. But, even if the agents end up passing, I'm so much happier with my MS now and know I will feel so much more confident sending out the next round of queries.

  2. I had a R&R which also ended in a single R, but the ms is much stronger for it. So I can't complain.