Going Back to Basics

I finished my first novel about two years ago. I had a professional editor look at it, cried as I cut away the fat, and trimmed it up to a respectable manuscript. Then, I started vying for literary agents, presenting my lovely novel with my first query letter, then a shiny new improved one when I discovered that the first one sucked. I was prepared for rejection, and it seemed that the world wasn’t ready for another fantasy novel starring witches and vampires, even if the witches were involved in international politics and the vampires didn’t sparkle.

Two years later and my novel has been sitting in my Google Drive, collecting digital dust.

I figured it wasn’t it’s time. That I would tighten it up, let it simmer, try again. I got two bites from prospective agents who ended up turning it down in the end. It gave me a glimmer of hope.

That was a year ago and I haven’t tried since.

I have had other projects. A few half-written novels in other universes, scores of short stories that have actually been published. I’ve gotten my name out there. I’ve started building a reputation, a gallery of works.

But, in the back of my mind, that itch was there. My witch girl was scratching to be let out, to tell her story. They all were. And, I found my mind wandering away from my current works and back to that world that I had so painstakingly created.

So, here I am. I’ve opened up that first page once again. I’m going to cut and carve and mold it to fit, crafting details that I’ve only dreamed up these last two years. I’m going back to the beginning until it’s finally finished – until a book is in my hands.


Published by Ren Martinez

Ren is a thirty-something Lost Boy whose personal aesthetic is “suspected of witchcraft by local villagers.” She subscribes to cheerful nihilism, the destruction of the patriarchy, and the belief that glitter makes everything better. She is a Richmond-based writer and performer who has fiction and non-fiction work found in a variety of publications, such as The Mary Sue, RVA Magazine, The Quotable, and Nostrovia Press. She is currently the fiction editor and a regular contributor at Quail Bell Magazine. She is also the co-host of the podcast, This F***ing Guy! Find out more at renmartinez.com or read her dumbass tweets on Twitter @itsrenmartinez

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