It’s over. You have finished another submission and pressed the BBOD (Black Button of Death)!

Please follow these 10 basic steps very carefully:

1. Breathing – breathing is good and must be accomplished at all costs.

2. Close the laptop – this is not the time to do another non-essential edit. Your sub has gone to the lovely big fluffy internet cloud in the sky. Move on. Stop crying. Stop it. There now, better?

3. Chocolate – copious amounts will help, I promise. Fill your boots.

4. Pacing – there is always pacing but as long as you don’t reverse No 2 then you will be fine.

5. Panic – this will happen for brief heart-fluttering moments throughout the next couple of hours but see No 1 for further details. You will be fine.

6. What if’s – you will  ponder every sentence/synopsis/author bio/Facebook page you have created for this sub. They might not like it,there I said it, but they might LOVE it. Does it matter? Do YOU love it? Does it keep YOU up at night chatting to the characters in your head (no, wait, that’s just me)? Is that not something you should be thinking about instead?

7. Celebration – give yourself a pat on the back, it’s not easy to do but give it a shot or ask someone else to do it for you. Stand in front of the mirror and say ‘well done’, in a non creepy way. Have a hot chocolate with whipped cream AND the chocolate sprinkles or a walk in the sunshine – what’s your favourite thing to do that you haven’t done since you wrote the first page? Go and do that for the whole day, you deserve it!

8. Sigh – normally of relief but may be linked to No’s 5 and 6.

9. Cry  – it may not be a full-blown tissue-needed experience but you may find you shed a tear for the chapters that have fled the nest or possibly from utter mental exhaustion from thinking about it all – you decide. Don’t worry though, the words and many more will be back! This can almost certainly be followed by laughter or maybe a smile. Easy now.

10. Sleep.

…and repeat.

I can confirm that no words were harmed in the making of this blog. Now get writing, go on.





  1. Author

    Thanks Angela – I think the refresh key on a key pad should be taken out. Just one small press and the screen changes and..nothing.

  2. Hi, Sarah

    Hi, Sarah!
    I know the feeling and then you worry in case you don’t get an acknowledgement in case your masterpiece has disappeared into cyberspace. Then you check you e-mails daily, once or twice or ten times until you get a reply or not.
    Well, if you don’t try to get your stuff out there, nobody knows you exist. Best of Luck.


  3. You make a lot of sense Sarah, especially the breathing and the chocolate. Just think, if you could combine those two the list of rules would get smaller. I’m going to take your word for it that no words were harmed during the making of this blog.
    xxx Massive Hugs my Scottish friend xxx

    1. Author

      Multi-tasking is the way forward David! I shall try your method and see how I get on.

    1. Author

      Thank you! I could easily have made it 100 steps, the list of what if’s is endless!

  4. Why is it that the ‘send’ button triggers total clarity on how to write that final paragraph – the one you thought you’d nailed but now realise you hadn’t.
    There should be a fail-safe built into the ‘send’ button – the ‘are you sure’ message you get when logging out of a secure site. That way you’d get the clarity AND the chance to apply it.
    C’mon you software geeks – you know it makes sense!

    1. Author

      Absolutely Brian! It’s a horrible, horrible feeling when it goes and then you say ‘Wait! I wanted to add…’ I shall pass on to some geeks I know and see if they can help us out.

    1. Author

      Thanks Seumas! It has been a month of gearing up for submissions and you forget the feelings that come bubbling to the surface when you raise your finger to press send. Stomach churning, doubt-filled feelings of ‘will they like it’ and ‘is it good enough yet’.