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Wednesday, February 29, 2012

So What's Up? Part II

Yes, there's been a long silence from me. No, I haven't been idle. I may have been procrastinating a little. But that's beside the point.

I've compiled a big list of agents, and now I'm narrowing the list down to determine who will be my 1st, 2nd, and 3rd tier choices and so on. So far, that project is going well. It looks like I'll have somewhere over 30 agents to choose from, and a few are standing out as the ones I'd definitely like to query first. It's a tedious process, but one that I feel is necessary if I'm to set myself apart from the thousands of other would-be authors who barrage agents with tons of misguided queries every day. Hopefully, after the ill-timed fiasco that was The Serenity Solution, I've learned some valuable things that will better equip me for this particular quest.

A query letter is a BIG DEAL. Sometimes I feel like too much attention is given to it. Sometimes I see query letters that look ho-hum, and yet landed a writer a great contract. Other times I see query letters that get me all excited, and yet they've failed after the writer put a TON of effort into it. I think just about every would-be author out there has questioned the validity of a query letter and has yanked out more than a little hair over it. I know I have. But, I think that maybe, just maybe, I've finally written a query letter that isn't complete junk. It might be a little wordy. I might be approaching it wrong. I might have broken every query letter convention. I may not have sufficiently answered or focused on "Mod So-and-So's" almighty three questions. About 20,273 doubts plague me.

And yet, it's about time to press the trigger and hope my aim is good.

My synopsis probably needs work. I may entirely rewrite Chapter One of Kricket's Song because I'm not confident I've established conflict, setting, and character well enough. Etc.

And so I forge ahead, and I take a little more slack out of the trigger.

One of these days, I'll hit the target dead center.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

So What's Up?

It's been a little while since I've posted, and even though things look quiet right now, there actually has been progress on Kricket's Song. So here's what's going on.

As you know, I've completed the initial editing/polishing phase on the manuscript. It can no longer be considered a "rough draft." It's starting to take a shape resembling what it should be when you pick it up on the bookshelf in a store. But, before you (or I) start getting excited...well, there's still a really long way to go before that happens.

I've started compiling a list of agents that I might like to query. Right now, it's just a very large and general list; I'll need to narrow it down and figure out which agents would be my top picks before I start sending out query letters. And that brings me to my next point: actually writing a query letter. I've written three drafts so far, and I've been receiving critiques on it from some of my fellow writers at Absolute Write. They've brought up some very good points and made some good suggestions. The problem is, it seems like every time I address an issue, it either raises more issues, or un-fixes an issue I'd previous thought fixed.

Also, after an initially unsuccessful appeal for some beta readers, I finally did find one person who was willing to take the first chapter. Again, he made some suggestions and critiques, and it appears I still have work to do on the manuscript itself. The good news is, this wasn't unexpected. Also, the changes should be too difficult to effect. The bad news is...well, there's still more work to do!

But all in all, progress is being made, so that's good. I've also been brainstorming some more for Kricket's Key and I think I'm making some progress with that particular plot puzzle. Hopefully, as I get the kinks worked out with Kricket's Song, I'll be able to turn my focus more and more to Key, but that may yet be some time down the road.

I'll keep you updated!