Monday, July 14, 2008

A Follow-Up to the Euphoria

Okay. I've calmed down a little since my last post. And now, of course, I am besieged with doubts. I emailed my grad advisor and immediately got an Out of Office until Aug. 1 Autoreply, so s/he's of no use here. Who better to turn to, then, than the wisdom of les internets?

Here's my quandary. It can be boiled down to raging insecurity re. my work and a healthy dose of Impostor Syndrome: If this publisher is interested in my MS--and interested, moreover, after having had hardly any time to look at the proposal, which I sent out towards the end of last week--then how on earth can it be a reputable press?

Now, I KNOW that it's a reputable press, because a) it's peer-reviewed, b) it's the UP of a major U, and c) I used at least one of its books extensively in my dissertation and it was very good and tremendously helpful. So I suspect that I'm just self-sabotaging. Or maybe they just respond positively to every book proposal, but that would be a massive waste of time for them (as well as for me, because if I send them the MS--as I no doubt will, of course, despite my fretting--then I can't send it to anyone else for about three months). And it would be kind of a lousy thing for them to do. Right?

So okay, what's the alternative? The editor saw my proposal this morning, thought that it looked promising, and sent me an email.

What does it say about me that my immediate reaction to that sentence is "Yeah, right"?

So I don't know, trashcousins.* I just searched the Chronicle fora for the press, and the only thing that anyone has to say about it is that it's reputable (if not top-top-tier, which I knew) and that it has a very fast turnaround time. Both good things. So I guess my real question is this: Why am I so lame?

*Yes, I'm trying very hard to work this word into the vocabulary, but I don't know how well it's going to do; it doesn't exactly roll off the tongue. The two stresses in a row (trash/cuz) makes it hard to say. And also it doesn't sound very nice. It's a term of endearment, though, really it is!


clio's disciple said...

Because graduate school conditions us to think that we don't measure up, and we are also browbeaten about How Hard It Is To Get Published? Maybe your ms. happens to fit right in with what the editor wants to see. Rejoice!

undine said...

They saw it, were excited about it, and want to send it out to readers--all sounds good to me. If you think about it, it doesn't take that long to read a proposal, especially if it's interesting and well written, so as clio's disciple said: rejoice!

medieval woman said...

Dude, send it - you'll be awesome!

Belle said...

You said it: boils down to raging insecurity (bred by academia and the grad school process) and a mega-dose of Impostor Syndrome (also exaggerated by GS, GS competition and gender issues).

Rejoice! Accept the wisdom of regular readers and send it! Bask in the praise and commendations noted above. Go heu mihi!!!!

And remember we little people when rich/famous/brilliant becomes your tag line.

Notorious Ph.D. said...

This is the Groucho Marx syndrome: that we wouldn't want to be part of a club that would have us as a member.

My advice: go look at the books that the press has published in the last few years: good stuff? Then yours is probably as good -- or will be, once the readers have their way with it.

Like I said in a previous comment, I'm at exactly the same stage, so feel free to e-mail me if you want to angst at length. I'm good at angst.