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Apologies for My Absence: Evaluating Your Daily Activities

Back in the early days of the blog, before I took my hiatus, I was vigilant about posting every day, five days a week. One of the things I promised myself upon my return was that I wouldn’t be required to post every day. Most agent bloggers don’t. That being said, I still feel like I’m letting you down when I’ve been absent a few days, or even a week or more. I like writing the blog and I really like interacting with my readers.

The truth is that the past few weeks have been crazy busy around here. I’ve responded to at least five submissions with offers (and or offered on a few myself), I’ve been running an auction for a book I’m super excited about, I’ve been preparing client material for submission, I’ve been submitting client material and I’ve been working with clients on everything from contract negotiations, to marketing plans, to brainstorming next ideas. I’ve had meetings with editors and authors and I’ve even paid taxes. I have absolutely LOVED the past few weeks (well except for the taxes part).

One of the things I’ve had to become really accepting of with the blog is that it’s not my number one priority. Over the past few years my list has grown, my clients’ careers have grown and BookEnds has grown. With all of that wonderful growth comes more work and different kinds of work. It means that there are times when things have to be put aside for another day. In this case it’s usually the blog, social media, and sometimes lunch (haha. I would NEVER skip lunch).

As your career grows as a writer there will be times when you are going to need to reevaluate what is taking up your time. Is the hour a day/week you used to spend on Facebook promotion still as beneficial as it used to be or do you need to take a break to focus on your deadline?

It’s easy to get so caught up in what we’re supposed to be doing that we forget to really evaluate how beneficial what we’re doing is. Success depends on these evaluations. If you want to succeed and grow you can’t keep doing the same things you’ve always been doing. The way I work as an agent has changed dramatically over the years and continues to evolve and change. Sometimes the blog suffers for it, but my hope is that when I do find the time to post what I’m posting is more meaningful (no guarantees).

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9 comments

  1. I don’t know how you ever posted daily (or how anyone else does either, for that matter), and I have to admit that I’m glad you don’t now. Too hard to keep up with! I appreciate that you post when you have something to share/write about, even if it gets postponed from time-to-time.

  2. No apology necessary. I enjoy the blog, but definitely understand workload, payoff and priorities. The information, and thoughts you share, are always worth the wait. Thank you for taking the time…when you have the time.

  3. The comment about reevaluating came at the perfect time for me. I’ve been doing appearances which aren’t really beneficial–bookclubs and small venues like that–and decided today I can make much better use of my time. To speak to 10 women took up my entire day. Most of them hadn’t even read the book and just wanted me to talk about the publishing business. One had read the book and decided I had too many different birds in there–this took up a good half hour. Nope. Judicious choices in the future. I could have stayed home and contacted book stores or libraries or just read a book.

  4. I’m OK with the blog not being updated regularly. In fact, I kept it in my RSS reader even after it had been retired in the hopes it would be resurrected one day. And it was!

    If you want to keep it active but don’t have time to update it like you want, why not ask other Bookends peoples (agents, interns, clients, other industry professionals) to submit a guest post? You could also ask a discussion question and ask readers to chime in in the comments, or open the comments section up to an impromptu Q&A. There are lots of ways you can reach a compromise and have the blog remain as active as you would like without it pulling focus from other, more important aspects of your work.

    1. I agree with Emily! And like my other fellow writers have said, no apology needed. Taking care of business is always more important. It’s the way you make your living after all.

  5. I just enjoy an inside look at the day to day thoughts and workings of a literary agent. You make it interested and put it in nice bite-sized posts.

    I think that even if you made the time to post every day, they wouldn’t be as interesting because they would start to feel forced and much less fun to both write and read.

    And as Janet said above, for me, daily posts would be too hard to keep up with. We have other things to do too!

  6. This last week I did something you’ve talked about here before – I had a week away with the family and no phones or internet. It was bliss. I took the opportunity to re-evaluate my time and what I can do to be more productive. As you say, it’s a matter of priorities.

  7. As a fan of quality over quantity in everything (chocolate, beer, books, etc), I’d rather see a occasional helpful blog post than know you’re just trying to put something up.

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