Coming up on thirteen years ago, I started writing with the dream of being published... Well, actually it was the dream of being traditionally published. And the dream probably started when I was a teenager and subscribed to Writers Digest. But that last part is neither here nor there.
I had a dream of being published and back in 2004, it was only a dream of being published by one of the traditional houses. Which meant getting an agent. Which meant learning how to do query letters and synopses. It also meant learning how to accept rejection and defeat and heartache.
Over the years, the dream slowly died. I think it starved to death. And that's okay. In its place a new dream grew - the dream of getting published.
Yeah, they sound like the same dream, don't they? The dream of being published vs the dream of getting published. To me, though, one is passive* and the other is active. The dream of someone else publishing me vs the dream of getting myself published. 'Pick me pick me' vs 'get up off your ass and do it your own damn self'.
Two years into the 'get up off your ass' dream, the old dream is dead. I killed it and then I ate it. Nowadays when I see someone suggesting 'the best way to write a query letter' or offering 'a new list of agents who are seeking submissions', I shudder. I can't imagine resurrecting the old dream.
The dream is dead... long live the dream.
*Yes, yes, I know that going after publication by traditional means is in no way passive. Think passive voice and active voice.