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When the Answer is "Not Yet."

Updated: May 15, 2020

Happy Monday, friends!

Later today, it will be my immense pleasure to announce the winners of the Corona Critique Giveaway.

I am SO thrilled to be able to do this, but part of me is sad that I can't give every single one of you a critique. The great news is that thanks to some extra donations (details this afternoon), we're going to be able to give away 50 critiques instead of 45! Woot!

Let's break the numbers down a little bit. I'm still logging the last few entries, but I think we're going to come out just over 1200 entries! Now remember, most of you logged 6 entries when you followed our donors for a bonus 5 entries. So that means that you are 1 in 200 entries. And with 50 prizes, you have about a 25% chance of winning... which are pretty decent odds for something like this, if I'm being honest! So cheers to us.

But on the opposite hand, that means that 75% will sadly walk away without a critique. And as much as I do believe that simply making new connections and meeting awesome new creators and members of the kid lit community is a prize in itself, I fully recognize that there will be some disappointment.

I know very much what it feels like when the answer is "not yet."

Sometimes I feel like:

"if I could just win a critique from Agent Awesome, then all my troubles would wash away and I'd finally land my dream agent."


"if I could just land this perfect opportunity, then the right set of eyes would see my incredible work."


"if I just get ONE.SINGLE.LIKE on #PBPitch this time around, my book will go straight to acquisitions and all will be right with the universe." (okay, that one's a little intense).

But time and time again, the answer has been "not yet." Notice that I don't say that the answer is "no." I fully and completely believe that I will someday find the agent that gets me. I will someday find the publishing house that loves my stories. I will someday hold my book in my hands and cry those happy tears when I get to breathe in that amazing new book smell and it's MY book. Because I don't give up. I revise again. I write another new draft. I keep going back to my incredible Critique Partners. I hope. And I know that if I don't give up, this dream that I work so hard for will become a reality.

So friends, don't despair. If today isn't your "big break," then go send out two more queries. Go write that new draft that's been pulling on your brain. Go revise, revise, revise. And don't ever stop dreaming. If your answer is "not yet" today, remember that it means you're one day closer to your yes.

I'll finish logging the entries early this morning and will be drawing the winners when my 2 year old goes down for a nap. So check back here and on Twitter around 2 PM PST (5 PM EST) for our Corona Critique Winners.

Meet Kailei Pew

Kailei believes in books. She believes in imaginative play. She believes in having fun, getting messy, and being silly with her kids. Thus For Little Readers was born.​ Kailei also writes picture books and is currently seeking representation. She loves creating books that bring children and parents together. Kailei hopes that her own books will one day be featured in her blog. ​Prior to staying home with her children and writing picture books, Kailei worked as a reading teacher and middle school mentor. She was a 2019 Write Mentor Mentee and a finalist in Susanna Leonard Hill's 2019 Holiday Writing Contest.



Mar 30, 2020

This is a fantastic post Kailei! I love how you look at writing disappointments and turn them into opportunities to improve and take risks. Thank you for this wonderful reminder. Made me smile 😊


Deborah Buschman
Deborah Buschman
Mar 30, 2020

Kailei you're the best. I love the "not yet" attitude. I'm using it as I create my website as a "yet" to be published writer. Have a great week.

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