“It is better to take many small steps in the right direction than to make a great leap forward only to stumble backward.” Proverb
I was born leaping forward into the doctor’s outstretched hands. Too impatient, I skipped crawling. At eight months, I took my first step and plunged head first against the corner of the coffee table, ripping a hole above my eyebrow.
By the time I entered elementary school, the teachers recommended I skip a grade. My father, however, refused. He said it was important to go through all the grades. I didn’t understand his reasoning. I was anxious to blaze through school. I wanted to make history as the youngest person to attend college. My father, however, knew skipping one grade would lead to other missed opportunities. He didn’t want me to become a twelve year old working with a bunch of thirty year olds. He wanted me to enjoy growing up one step at a time. The teachers compromised by supplementing my education through the Gifted and Talented Education Program, which allowed me to take lots of baby steps with others my age.
Over the years, I’ve adopted my father’s wise reasoning. It is important to not rush through anything, including the steps toward publication. That’s why I’m not anxious to hear back from my beta readers regarding my crime novel. Readers may pester me with questions, but I am firm in my response. I haven’t heard from all of my beta readers, so there is no news to report.
Every book’s journey is different. Some books are drafted, revised, published, and sold within a matter of months. Others take years from concept to bookstore.
I’m done leaping forward and stumbling backward. It’s time to take a breath and focus. By the time I get feedback from the beta readers, I will have had enough time away from the book to view it with fresh eyes for the next round of edits. When the time is right, I will start querying for an agent.
In the meantime, you can join me in practicing patience. Enjoy taking tiny steps in whatever is it you are working on…even if that means waiting to discover what your next step is.