Saturday, January 23, 2010

HIT THE BRAKES!!! Do we need a rewrite?

Ugh. I think the answer may be...yes.
Of course I want the book to be the best it can be, and I think I'm pretty darn close...but I am feeling a nagging to rewrite the first chapter.
"Why?" you ask.
"Because," I say, "for some reason the first chapter doesn't feel like it jives with the rest of the book. While the information is critical to the story, something about the presentation seems off.

So - now I get to start brainstorming on how I want to rewrite that darn first chapter. Part of me thinks this is a great idea & I should be excited to polish this book up so it's pretty and beautiful making it impossible for an agent or a publisher to reject. The other part of me has a sneaking suspicion that the first chapter is fine - that I'm just freaked out to call it "done" and am going to find ways to prolong the refining process.

Time will tell...

Friday, January 8, 2010

RULES SCHMULES...It pays to break them!

Before I started soliciting agencies, I had no idea there were so many RULES to follow in this publishing game. Specific fonts. Specific spacing. Contact us/Don't contact us. Snail Mail ONLY. Where's your SASE? We will send the environmental police to your house and burn you at the stake (like a metal stake, not steak like sirloin, that would require a visit from PETA) if you dare print something on paper - EMAIL ONLY!

Everybody has different rules - it's a wonder anyone gets published.

I have learned, however, that there is one rule that's pretty firm across the board. If an agent rejects you, it's okay to send a courteous response ,but do not bug them. They've made their decision and bothering them will only agitate them and get you black listed. (Black listed? I thought that only happened in bad made for TV movies!)

Uh oh! What's a girl to do who's made a resolution to be more audacious?! ....
She responds to a rejection and says, "Would you be willing to offer any feedback on my query letter?"

Low and behold, the agent responds and gives her HUGE, WONDERFUL, INFORMATIVE feedback! Hallelujah!!! After a brief modification to the query, incorporating the agent's comments, I now have a query that, I hope, will be much more captivating , and assure prospective agents that my book is worth examining a bit closer.

So, thank you, Melissa Jeglinski from the Knight Agency, for breaking the cardinal rule and responding to my email. (She didn't respond when I asked if I could resubmit - that might have been pushing the audacity factor up a few too many notches).

So, my point for this post: