Polished, corrected, tidied, the manuscript is off on its journey to editors. My lovely agent, and she is kind, she phoned me just to reassure me today, is writing the pitch, phoning around to get the book to the right people, and tidying up my biography. She also wanted the synopsis of my next book, just to prove I'm not a one book wonder, I suppose. It's going off to many people, people she's been talking it up to for months. Most will 'thanks, but no thanks', it's not an easy book to place, with elements of a historical novel and a fantasy edge too. Hopefully one (or better, two) will like it.
My job is now to forget about it and let her show it around. It may all come to nothing, but it's out of my hands, which is a huge relief. On days like this, I remember all the negative messages you hear about how impossible it is to get published. While I'm actually working on it, it seems more likely. Time will tell.
Meanwhile, the poetry collection is having its final polishes too. There comes a point when you have to say, for novels as well as poetry, it ain't perfect but I'm out of time/patience. I'm tired, sad and unwell, so it feels a bit uphill at the moment. But in a few weeks, I'm off for the rarest of treats, a whole week on holiday with my husband. No kids, just the two of us, in the Lake District.
All the frustrations of the last weeks, from UCAS cock-ups with no.1 son (now resolved), having to declare an elderly relative no longer able to cope with her finances, and the sheer tiredness that comes with being ill, will be left behind, and we can get a bit of the perspective that comes from looking back at your life from a long way away.