by Scott Rhoades
October seems like the right time to live in fear. Maybe that's why I decided to send out some more queries for my first book, and to start to prepare query materials for my second.
Even though I've done it fairly often, every query letter becomes an exercise in terror. I try to pretend I'm cool with it, and to take a fairly casual approach that I use to try to convince myself I'm being professional, that it doesn't matter and it's all part of the game. But once I send them out, my body begins to tremble with nervousness, and that old fear of rejection sets in. Even more terrifying, the fear of not being rejected wracks me for the next few days, as I hope (or don't hope) for a quick response saying I'm the Next Big Thing.
It takes a few days to settle down, but the fear stays there, niggling in the back of my mind. I try to forget it, to busy myself with other things, and above all, to not wait. To wait is to live forever in that moment when, in a horror movie, you know the baddie is going to work his badness, or that moment in a Halloween haunted house when you know something is about to jump out and get you.
It's a feeling that is simultaneously delicious and nauseating. Perfect, I guess, for the Halloween season.