My family calls my enthusiasm for details about the Battle of Midway “the lecture series” but this post isn’t about that. Well, no, no, not really…
What intrigues me about the Battle of Midway is how Emperor Hirohito must have felt on the morning of June 7, 1942, when he learned that the very heart of his navy, and therefore the very thrust of his plans for victory, had been sunk.
Talk about your clean slate.
How tough must it have been for him to go into the office that morning, knowing that every single detail of every war plan they had made was now in the dumpster. Hey, guys… uh, I have a little news…
What has that got to do with writing? Nothing. I just thought it was cool.
No, I’m in the process of seeking an agent for my new book. Unlike my previous novels, my wife actually likes this one, so I know it’s good.
You’re a writer. You know how it goes. You craft the query letter, you scan the agent’s site, you submit, submit, submit.
And then you wait. And you wait. And you wait.
During the Napoleonic Wars, the Admiralty of the British Royal Navy dispatched Admiral Horatio Lord Nelson to bottle up the French fleet at Toulon. Good luck, sir, and Godspeed.
And then they settled in to wait for news of what happened. History tells us that the fleet got out Toulon before Nelson got there and led him a merry chase across the Atlantic and back before finally getting caught off a Portuguese cape called Trafalgar. What followed was one of the most important naval battles ever fought. Superseded, perhaps, by the Battle of Midway. Such huge events happening out there on the bubbling waves, but not a word of it crossing the Admiralty’s transom.
Waiting for a response to your submission query is kind of like that. I think of my queries as ships, sent out to discover a new world. It naturally takes some time for them to get there, and some time for them to get back.
I am, by nature, terribly impatient.
But brave new worlds are not discovered overnight, and wonderful things are always worth waiting for.
For all that, I’m going to run down to the waterfront and see if there’s any news…