Lately, I’ve been asked one question a lot by editors and agents, “How long have you been writing?” I hate this question because I don’t want to answer. I’m embarrassed to say, “Oh, I started seriously writing in 1997 and I’m still not published.” And while a true statement, it leaves out a lot of details.
I joined RWA in 1997 and attended my first National Conference in Orlando that same year. I didn’t have a clue. Through the years, I’ve been active. I joined my local chapter, found a critique group, volunteered and served my chapter at the board level, and yes, became a professional writer.
As the years went on, I finaled and won contests, attended workshops and conferences, and came very close to selling, but no cigar. I’ve had the “good” rejection letters, had full requests, garnered the interest of some big name editors and agents, but I still have not sold a book. Why? I’m still trying to figure that out, but I am not giving up.
So, how do I answer this particular question? I put some thought into it and here’s what I came up with: My first book, bound and covered, was titled, “The Adventures of Roland the Pig”. I was in the third grade and the cover art was my own. Unfortunately, this epic tale has been lost to the ages, misplaced during one of my many moves.
Another true statement, but this time, it’s positive and funny. What do you think? How would you answer this question?