That, my friends is the beast that rides me like the witch hag in a nightmare.
Jean Luc Picard (Star Trek the Next Generation) said, "you'll soon come to realize that there are far fewer days ahead and a brief time to remember those that are behind us."
Since not many of you are as old as I am, let me tell you, I can relate.
Which begs the question each and every one of you have asked at one time or another (whether you voice it out loud or not): HOW DAMNED LONG DOES IT TAKE TO SAY NO?
You all know exactly where I am going with this. When submitting your work to publishers editors, agents, et al, that little phrase NO SIMUTANEOUS SUBMISSIONS PLEASE! Skitters up and down your literary spine like ants at a gourmet picnic.
Now if you're thirteen years old and sending your work out for the first time, this could work for you because time is what you have plenty of. But when the years start racing by (and they will youngun's) like a Nascar on the fast track, you will understand that you need to have your work read in far less time than it takes for a new universe to form.
Editors say they know what they want and in fact have given speeches and seminars on just what they are looking for, and I have often wondered why (when a detailed "as requested" synopsis) is sent, it takes so long to say yes or no?
Now before any agents editors and protectors of those therein get up in arms, I KNOW the workload they have. Everybody and their last two generations of relatives has, have or wants to write a book, and each thinks his/hers/theirs is the next great thing which adds to their slush piles (have I answered my own dumb question here? I think so).
In any case, last year Liberty States invited a wonderful multi-published author who said that she never ever lets any of her queries and/or manuscripts stay with any publisher longer than eight weeks, six being her norm. Only once (like me) did she have a problem with two publishers who wanted her work and she had to make a choice and live with it.
I know someone who submitted a manuscript and waited three years before receiving a rejection. Well folks, I just don't have that kind of time, but like you I know its a waiting game and hit or miss, and we'll continue to do what we do because we love it and hopefully be able to exhale when the word is YES!
P.S. You know some of you wanted to say this now didn'tcha?