Believing in yourself, and finding someone else to help you believe.
Every work of art, every paperback in the used book store, every single creative success has had that special someone who believed in it, who pushed that author/creator forward at that specific moment in time. And I think for many of us writers, that someone is our agent. He/she read our first novel -- or at least our attempt at it at the time -- and saw something in it. It struck a chord. It made that agent sit up and take notice, fall into the story maybe, or at least see the spark of something new and different and INTERESTING.
For many of us, our agent is our biggest fan, but even more than that, for me, my agent is the one who can bounce ideas back at me and say, Yes, this is working. Or no, let's try this. Having a creative partner -- who you completley trust -- is just so important! In order to do good work, your VERY BEST WORK, there has to be someone who pushes you. Someone who gets it, when the ideas you volley back and forth come to fruition on the page.
The creative process is individual, but for me, mine has only gotten better since I've gotten my agent. So thank you, Caryn Wiseman! Shout out to her and her exquisite taste. ; )
We write to connect with readers, and sometimes there is that disconnect: the story is original, the characters are believable, interesting, and dynamic, but something is wrong. Agents GET THIS -- LIKE IT'S THEIR JOB. Oh yeah, it is. And I have been so floored a few times when my agent can just pinpoint exactly what needs to be changed or what I need to look at more closely. And I am so lucky to have an editorial agent in Caryn. She helps me write, with a few words here, a three-page email there. ; )
Writing is solitary a lot of the time, and it is collaborative sometimes too.
So a big thank you to my agent Caryn! FLUTTER comes out NEXT MONTH! More details soon about the launch party and some contests!