#Writemotivation 3/9 update

1. Read at least 5 published books. Finished Burning Obscura and then devoured Solving for Ex. 2 books down, 3 to go. (It helps my internship wasn’t that busy this week. I literally had NOTHING to do Saturday for it except send a few rejections.)
2. Count how many partials/finished MS are read for my internship. -I also got to slush dive through her pile this weekend. Not sure if I should count those too or just requested things, but since that took up the majority of my Sunday time, I think I will. Counting those- 54 total. 2 of those were fulls. 41 of those were queries, 7 resulted in requests. Which is probably more than she’d prefer, but they very much sounded up her alley.
3. Finish a chapter of an in progress novel.-Worked on the outline instead, I’m reaching a point where I need to start laying the groundwork for the
And a crit.

Phew! I have a Big Project this week, so don’t be surprised if I’m not around much.

Also, if you’re querying: Don’t be insane. Don’t write your query in your character’s first person POV. Don’t query an already self published work (and include the Amazon or Kickstarter links). Don’t pick random chapters from the middle of your novel to include instead of the first few. Don’t bother putting it ATTN: AGENTNAME. It has no impact on if the agent or the intern is going to be the one looking over the slush at any given moment. Do make sure the agent even reps whatever you’re pitching. If it’s a creepy as hell adult novel, don’t send it to an agent who specializes in kids cute picture books/MG. Their interns probably don’t need the nightmares. Don’t email just to ramble and not say anything about the book itself.

I’m beginning to understand why agents/editors have a reputation as big drinkers and chocolate fiends.

Remember, folks. Your query letter is a business introduction. They want to know about your story in a clear and concise way. Everything else is secondary to that. Include their specified amount of pages, pasted in unless told otherwise in their submission guidelines. Yes, I know your novel is a special snowflake, and as a writer myself, I do understand how difficult it is to condense that 100k brilliant manuscript into a short email. But if you can’t manage that? They assume your story is likewise just as rambly and incoherent, and it’s an easy choice to pass. You want to give them a reason in their already crowded and hectic lives to care about your story. You want them to go “Ooh, I have to have the rest of this!”. The easiest answer for them to give is no. Give them a reason to say Yes.

4 Comments

  1. March 10, 2014 at 10:20 pm

    *hugs* I promise not all of us are that insane.

    • Leigh Caroline said,

      March 12, 2014 at 7:34 pm

      *laughs* No, I know. I’d say 99% of the queries I’ve been allowed to look over so far aren’t. But the crazy ones both crack me up and give perspective. Most of them, I want to believe, are just out of ignorance. People don’t know, when they’re not involved in publishing and don’t research, that they can’t just throw their story to the winds and have it bought.

  2. March 15, 2014 at 6:44 pm

    “If it’s a creepy as hell adult novel, don’t send it to an agent who specializes in kids cute picture books/MG.” Hey! Finally found a mistake I haven’t made. Woohoo!

    • Leigh Caroline said,

      March 16, 2014 at 8:35 am

      It happens pretty frequently. Admittedly, the agent I’m interning for is pretty much open to anything if the writing is awesome enough, but chances are super slim she’s even going to request a partial if it’s not a genre she likes. (The craziest so far: A query that in bold and Italics kept repeating something to the effect of “It’s like a movie! And everyone who’s read it love it!” in between broken English bits about an already self published novel. I about fell over laughing when I saw it!)


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