I just got back from the annual conference put on by my local chapter of the society of children's book writers and illustrators (SCBWI). Boy! They should find a shorter acronym. The event was well organized and went without a hitch.
I always feel so inspired after spending the day around such great and talented people. The illustrators gave great presentations, the local published writers were fun and lively. There were some presenters who were very full of themselves, but, overall, it was a positive vibe.
Even while I feel inspired, I get that sense of being a grain of sand in a pile of poppy seeds. There are so many of us, and I'm not the one with any value. That's how I feel. Many on the unpublished side of the fence are practically rabid with hope and need. I'm on that unpublished side of the fence, but I went without an agenda of finding that agent or publisher who would think me wonderful.
I need to observe and absorb right now. While conferences are informative, there is a distinct them and us feel to them. The agents, publishers, editors, published artists and writers glomb together as professionals in a field, while the rest of us stand outside the gate, feverishly wanting inside.
One minute, I think Giving It Over is a great novel. The next minute, I think it's tripe. I can't be objective about it any more. So, what's the deal? Spend money on professional critiques? Oh, yes. There are many people out there willing to take my money. What makes their opinion any better than those of my critique group or any of the other people who've read my book?
Maybe if I just focus on book 2, the geek girl story, I'll be okay. I need to get lost in it. Then there's that short story about the love potion I haven't finished. Yeah. I've definately got stuff I could be doing. Going to this conference is good fuel. And then there's the retreat in June.
Just keep swimming.