Tuesday, December 8, 2009

A dark day in the Crane household! contest results and blurb trauma

It turns out Oblio was NOT the softest kitteh ever! Read the photo essay of Kitty Softness Smackdown Rumble here at Stumbling over Chaos. Also, stuff about the contest, in reverse order, can be found in posts from all last week here.

I feel a bit like a traitor, as one of the judges. However, Oblio has been very good about it.

In other news
My book was sent out for blurbs to various authors, and I just got my first response, via my agent, where an author didn't like it enough to blurb it. I totally respect this author saying that, because I would never want her to put her name on it if she didn't feel it was her cup of tea, and also, she doesn't even know me, and she took time out of her busy schedule to give it a whirl, for which I'm hugely grateful. I know I would feel resentful if I was expected to favorably blurb a book I didn't love.

But of course, it freaks me out, because it's easy to get into slippery slope thinking, like, what if everybody hates it?!?!

Then I start thinking, why? And I scan my agent's email for clues. Suddenly there is all sorts of dark significance in my agent's phraseology: "was not her cup of tea." Is it possible my agent is shielding me from some commentary she feels I cannot handle? Why not repeat this person's communication to me verbatim?

Naturally, as author, I have a long and startlingly elaborate list of possibilities why people might not enjoy my book, or why some would even come to actively dislike, or possibly hate it! Here in my office, I am able to imagine baroque worlds of doom and gloom that involve my book crashing and burning, and me a bitter failure. A husk of a woman. OMG, I was writing this sort of putting a humorous spin on it, but now I'm getting verklempt.

Website: Up so so soon! By the end of the week. I'm psyched about my progress, slow as it is.

**PS** Okay, I'm really being dramatic, I can see.
These authorly ups and downs just surprise me, and I think they're a little bit funny, (i.e., me being a freak). Because, of course some readers will like my book, others won't. Just like with every other book in the world. In the end, I am SO happy to have it being published, and it really is quite exciting! Yet intense!


Lori said...

Chin up. Maybe it really just wasn't her cup of tea. We're all looking forward to reading it!

Chris said...

Probably it accidentally went to someone who writes math textbooks...

Very graciously done there, Oblio!

Carolyn Crane said...

Oh, Lori, thanks! Now, I should amend that post, because I don't want people to worry. What book on the planet does everybody like?

Chris: Oblio thanks you.

KT Grant said...

Chin up dear! I wouldn't worry. Perhaps the author wasn't the right one to ask the blurb for.

Kati said...

Chin up, darlin'. There's lots of books that aren't my cup of tea. Doesn't mean they aren't fabulous. And your book is going to be very successful. Why?

Because your Carolyn-Freakin'-Crane! That's why.

Now go cuddle Oblio, who I'm sure is in horror over losing the all important Pat the Kitty Contest (thank goodness you didn't call it something else - that would have been dirty). Oh what? Someone was going to say it sooner or later. I just beat LBea to the punch.

Kati said...

Shit! You're Carolyn-Freakin'-Crane.

I really do know the difference between your and You're.


Carolyn Crane said...

KB: Oh, for sure! It would be weird if everybody automatically liked it.

Kati: LOL. CFC here! Oh, and actually, miss dirty mind, Janicu beat you to the punch!!

Natasha (Wicked Lil Pixie) said...

That's just ONE authors opinion! I'm sure you'll get great blurbs!

Blodeuedd said...

Poor Oblio, I am sure Mayhem is glowing with pride now.

Chear up, you can't expect everyone to love it, cos if they did then you would be the richest author in the world. And all that fame and fortune can bring a girl down. So think of it as luck. the enxt one will surely give a nice blurb

Carolyn Crane said...

Natasha: Thanks! I didn't mean to be all poor me. This blurb thing happens a lot, I've been told.

BLDD: LOL. Yes, I'd be like one of those billionaire lotto winners who shoots herself in the head!

Hilcia said...

Just think CJ, horror is not my cup of tea, coffee or chocolate, but do you think that takes anything away from Stephen King? I don't think so. *g* Chin up and some cuddles for Oblio. ;)

Penny Watson said...

Here's the part about becoming a published author that people forget about...It takes a huge amount of courage to put your writing out there for the general public knowing that some people will rip you to shreds. And, some people will love your story. And some people will think you're brilliant, you're boring, you're fantastic, and you are "not their cup of tea." You're gonna get the whole enchilada, and you can totally take it, Carolyn. (Do you feel your reptilian skin growing? :) It's part of being a writer.

Here's how I look at it...if even one person reads my book and likes it, that's pretty cool. I accomplished something. I personally cannot wait to read your book. Advice on finding advanced readers....try to choose people who enjoy your genre! Good luck!

Carolyn Crane said...

Hilcia! Oblio and I thank you. Stephen King is pissed off, tho!

Penny: Oh, thanks for this insight! I really appreciate it. You have a really good attitude. I'm copying you from now on, dude! Tho really, even in my genre, it won't be everyone's cup of tea. Oh well!

Rebecca @DSB said...

You are so cool to share the author experience this way CJ, warts and all. In a way, I'm glad to hear that those author blurbs actually mean something. The cynic in me thinks that half those comments are empty recommendations.

I shy away from stuff that everybody and their grandmother loves - so I think it's a good sign if your book has appeal to a specific group of people with excellent taste. : )

Mandi said...

I break out in a sweat every morning when I post a review...I would be a puddle of goo if I had a book coming out :)

You have the right attitude. And as long as you have a stocked bar, all will be well ;)

Lea said...

Oblio, very gracious indeed. I think you should get the prize for the most pleasant kitteh ever. ;) Oblio does seem to be enjoying that mouse though.

As for the book blurb, no worries Carolyn, from what I understand it happens and likely it really wasn't this particular author's cuppa. I know there will be millions of readers out there that will enjoy it!

Don't feel down, the next response will be complimentary. :)

Take Care

Katie Reus said...

I totally get the worrisome thoughts but you're fabulous. You got a great agent and sold to an awesome house. :) Writing is soooo subjective! In a weird way, this'll prepare you if you ever get a less than stellar review cuz that skin just has to get thicker and thicker. Personally, I can't wait to read it!! (And I really can't wait to see your new website!) Cyber hugs ;)

Anonymous said...

I totally understand your nerves. That would freak me out too. In fact, a similar thing happened when I came up for tenure. My dept., as in common practice, sent out requests to 9 professors from around the country to write letters on my tenure case and one of them -- someone I admire -- declined.

I will never know if she was too busy, felt unqualified, or thought I stunk, but I obsessed about it ... until the other 8 glowing letters came in.

Hang in there!!

Jill Sorenson said...


I'm sure this happens to everyone!! I have no idea how many authors have declined to read or blurb my books, but only because I haven't been told. I'd rather not know.

About new author freakouts: I'm having one right now! I just finished a first draft and I'm a nervous wreck. I feel so dissatisfied and untalented and...subpar. It's embarrassing to admit! But maybe it will make you feel better, knowing you're not the only one who has fears and doubts and disappointments.



orannia said...

(((CJ))) (((Oblio)))

It's really hard, when you've put so much time and effort into something to have someone...not disparage but dismiss it. But honestly, it may be just as simple as her picking up your book on the wrong day. There are honestly days when certain books just don't click, and I know it's me and not the author. (I still haven't read Blaze of Memory, and it's not because I dislike Nalini's books, because I *heart* them. I'm just not ready yes, and I don't want to do it a disservice...if that makes sense.

Fingers crossed that it works for the other authors. I for one am really looking forward to reading it (and pottering through your new website :)

Kevin Fenton said...

I feel your pain, Carolyn. I am lucky because I know three of the four people I wanted to blurb my book. Yet number four has greeted even the request with awkward silence.

But the other commenters here talk sense. Someone loved your book enough to represent it; someone love d it enough publish it; and now people will love it enough to blurb it.

Plus, I've read earlier things you've written and they're wonderful.

Carolyn Crane said...

Rebecca: Oh, thanks for saying that! And yes, wow, author blurbs do seem to mean things to many authors. Who knew!

Mandi: LOL. I thought about your saying that when I read your last post now.

Lea: Yeah, that's what my agent said. Maybe you should become an agent!

Katie: Thanks Katie. it's so easy to lose sight of the great things that have happened!

Jessica: Thanks for saying that. It helps it happens to everyone in various ways.

Jill: Oh, your books are so well loved, and you're having one too, now! I see it never ends then...

Orannia: Thanks!! Yes, I'm like that with moods too!

Kevin: Hey, thanks for stopping by to my pity party and saying that! Oh, no, awkward silence. The worst.

Joanna Chambers said...

Madam Tumperkin predicts great success for you in 2010.

*mysterious silence*

Renee said...

Everybody here has very eloquently stated the truth of the matter!

((Big hugs, CJ))

writtenwyrdd said...

I'd start wondering if that was the first sign of my personal apocalypse, getting a rejection like that. I'm sure that the mental trauma you are giving yourself over this incident is far greater than it deserves...but also I'd be right there, doing the same thing, if it were me in your shoes.

But I'm sure your book is great adn I look forward to reading it.

Tracy said...

It's totally understandable that as an author you will have those "OMG will they all say something bad moments" but you can live through them. You know, logically, that there will be many, many, many people who will like your book.

Keep a stiff upper lip, baby!

Marta said...

Hi, Carolyn, What really matters on books is the cover, and you've got a kickass one.

I'm with Kati. You can't take the "don't want to blurb" personally. Maybe your book really isn't the sort of book the author prefers, just like the author may not want a double-latte, because she prefers soy chai. It is not an insult to espresso drinks.