Anyone who knows me or reads my blog, will probably know that I suffer with depression. So this blog is about my self-doubt, this blog is about Thomasina.
Although Thomasina only got a name about a year ago, she’s been sitting in my head all my life. She’s the nagging voice that tells what I can’t do. Not what I’m not allowed to do, mind, what I’m not capable of doing. Which, according to her, is pretty much everything.
Thomasina has coloured my entire life, or should that be shaded? It’s definitely darker with her in. Add to that 27 years of agent and publisher rejections and it’s amazing that I put pen to paper, or keystroke to memory instead of blade to wrist.
Even though I know that Thomasina is there, that she wants, or at least expects, to see me fail, I have learned over the years some coping mechanisms to deal with her. I am not doing the affirmations in the mirror as that’s just excruciating, but I try to block her out. Doesn’t really work of course, I mean how do you close your ears to someone who sits in your own brain? So she’s there telling me that I’m going to fail, get rejected, that I’m not good enough, each and every time I send any form of submission in.
Trying to quiet that kind of voice is like trying to herd cats and pigeons together – it’s not going to happen. That said, I don’t always get rejections anymore, I am actually getting accepted, accepted and published. Maybe only for short stories at this point, but something is better than nothing, take that Thomasina – she immediately chirps up that it’s still next to nothing and I want to slap her.
But something happened in Winchester (something I’ve mentioned in previous blogs), I submitted one story to four agents and all four wanted to see more. So I listened to their comments, took note of their individual requirements and edited all into one version of the updated manuscript which I then sent to all four of them at the same time.
Within a day I got a positive response from one agent asking me to go to London to meet him. I did think about letting the other three know there and then, but I didn’t want to be precipitous just in case it didn’t work out.
Of course it actually did work out. Yes, I am now officially represented by a proper literary agent. Happy bunniness abounds – there are even pictures to prove it (poor posture and everything!).
So ya-boo-sucks Thomasina, I am good enough, I can write and I will get a full novel published, may not be tomorrow, but it is going to happen. This time Thomasina gives no reply, well a dirty look or two, but she can’t say anything – she’s well and truly gagged.
For now at least.