Confessions of a Romance Writer | Surviving the waiting game

In Guest Articles by Media/PR Coordinator3 Comments

Writing a romance story seems to me to be a long, arduous activity. It involves lots of false starts. Lots of doubt. Lots of wondering what the hell I’m doing. You write in isolation and you’d have to be a bit crazy to even consider starting.

Don’t get me wrong. Writing a romance is the best thing in the entire world. It’s once you’ve finished that the waiting game begins.

Waiting to hear how you went in that competition you entered. Waiting to get feedback from the two or three people you’ve trusted enough to read and critique your magnificent prose. Waiting to see if you’ll hear from someone who’ll take you on and publish your story. Waiting for another story idea to come bursting out of your tired, uncertain brain while all this is going on.

It drives me nuts.

But getting published isn’t something I can control. It’s not something I have any say in whatsoever. Well, not unless I go down the self-publish avenue, which is looking very attractive right about now.

Sure, I can write a story most readers enjoy. Maybe. And yes, I can make sure I know what the story’s main theme is. And create an enticing snippet to attract publishers and agents, or even readers directly. How about this? Sure, she’s good enough to renovate a country hotel. But good enough to love? Maybe not. You’d read story like that, wouldn’t you?

What I can’t do is make anyone accept my story. Or even consider it.

Sure, I’ve entered competitions. Five in fact. I was a finalist in three, one I even won. But I didn’t hear a thing from another, nor made the grade in the last. Sure, this isn’t bad. It’s actually pretty good, all things considered. It gives me bragging rights and makes me sound like I know what I’m doing. But it doesn’t guarantee publication.

Because there are no guarantees.

It’s a buyers’ market, meaning publishers and agents are inundated daily with submissions much better than mine. My story is up against those who are better at crafting them than me. It’s up against known authors with guaranteed sales. It’s competing against other authors who can write two, three, even four books a year. I’ve written one. It only took me four years. And it hasn’t been published. Yet.

I don’t mean to be pessimistic. Nor am I complaining. That’s just the way things are. I knew it going into this romance-writing caper. What I didn’t consider, though, was how long I’d have to wait to hear something, anything, from those I’ve approached.

It’s agony. Big time.

Waiting is supposed to be good for me. Or so I’ve been told. It teaches me patience. To be strong. To not give up. To believe in my writing ability. Yeah. By now I should be the strongest, most confident-of-my-abilities and patient author around.

Only I’m not. Nowhere near it.

I hate waiting.

Wendy Davies

Wendy adores riding her pedal-assist electric bike. And living in Melbourne means she has easy access to some incredible bike paths and Victoria’s extensive rail trails.

She runs her own editing and communications business and is often found reading her Kindle, immersed in a romance story. She makes her own jewellery. And enjoys travelling with her husband, where she often indulges in taking the odd landscape photograph.

Wendy lives her life with every intention of leaving this world laughing and shouting “what a great ride this have been”.

Check out her website, or follow her on Facebook – but she’s not on Twitter!


  1. Great piece Wendy, I can relate! And best luck with your novel, hope you aren’t left waiting much longer.

    1. Thanks Maya, I’m so happy to hear I’m not alone in this. What a relief! Like you, I hope I don’t have to wait too much longer either. The only thing I can do is forget all about my story and just get on with writing the next one. Hope your wait is too long or painful either.

      1. Sorry Maya, I meant to say “I hope your wait isn’t too long either” but it didn’t come out that way. The exact opposite actually!

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