Yashodhaan Burange: Patience in Publishing

Every aspiring writer faces a mountain of doubt each time he/she reads his/her own work. It’s in his/her blood to question his/her own caliber, simply because modern writers are surrounded by tons of good writing and literature. Social media has exposed us to the very best of writing out there, it may be the good ol’ Victorian era literature or modern day novels and slam poetry, the truth, is that it’s easily accessible to us. This hampers the eagerness to take a leap of faith when it comes to reaching out to a publication house, but is it as bad as everyone claims it to be? Is there any point in taking your time before you knock on an editor’s door? Absolutely, it has far too many benefits. Let’s go through a few of those.

1.      Final draft isn’t always final.

Look, this isn’t quantum physics, just a very basic realization about the creative process. Our brain is as unpredictable as the weather. Your creativity might slingshot itself on one of the most mediocre days. It is never too late to give time the benefit of doubt when it comes to creativity. If today makes you feel like you’ve finally achieved a satisfying result in your writing, then tomorrow might surprise you. Of course, it can disappoint you as well, but hey, benefit of doubt. Too many successful writers have claimed that letting the final draft rest for a while proved to be unequivocal in the success of their book. So give yourself some breathing space and don’t rush, tomorrow might bring a twist in your plot.  

2.      Patience equals assurance.

Let’s say that you have a pretty good manuscript waiting to get published. People in your life know that you are a decent writer and they’re slowly pushing you to approach a publishing house. Relatable? Of course it is. You must not succumb to this; it’s a very loving pressure but its pressure nevertheless. No one except you knows what kind of a writer you are or what kind of a writer you want to be. Be patient; as you evolve gently every day, so does your writing and your preferences with writing. Knowing yourself better can be an ace card for your book. So wait, detach, and go back to what you’ve written. Ask yourself if you are happy with what you have written and if it matches your present state of mind. Your writing won’t ever go to waste, but it can be true that your manuscript is awaiting a better timing than the current one. Learn to make peace with it; it’s never ever too late.

3.      Age DOES play a huge part.

Wait, before you roll your eyes, let me clarify. Good writing isn’t associated with a specific age or age group, I’m not telling you to give up the dream of publication just because you’re in your mid-twenties. No, time isn’t a quantitative aspect in getting published, but more so of a qualitative aspect. Maturity in your age is pivotal in the way you’ll express your thoughts. The more you live, the more you experience, the better you get. So many remarkable writers got published late in their life, they did not give up. Nor did they settle for something less than what they deserved. If you are meant to get published, you will. Don’t battle your creativity by arming yourself with a deadline. There shouldn’t be a battle to start with. Shrug off this naïve thought that getting published at a really young age is something to be proud of. Ask yourself if your goal is to get published or to get published at a specific age. Assess yourself accordingly.

4.      The right kind of people.

Publication is not an easy process. There are too many crucial factors attached behind it, and most importantly, it’s a process created by people. You must take your own time in building your contacts. Finding the right kind of people won’t be easy. If it feels too easy, there’s something wrong. A lot of publication agencies seem lucrative; they offer easy deals and solutions in order to get your name printed. Don’t fall prey to this, you need to search really hard for the right publication house. You need the right editor, the right creative team and the right timing, just so that your writing gets the attention it deserves. Luck is quintessential in finding these people; you need to keep searching constantly, but know that these people will maximize the potential of your book before it hits the printing room. So, don’t frown if you have to be patient before they arrive in your life.

Yashodhaan Burange is 24, and prefers poetry over prose. Currently embroiled in a constant hunt for metaphors which will lessen the irony of the biggest metaphor; life. He is bearded and toys with anxiety to the point where social interactions feel like a thesis he cannot wrap his head around. This is his first column to Thirty West and has his poetry display on Instagram @yashodhaanburange