Monday, 28 May 2012

In with the old and out with the new?

One of the differences that stands out the most between querying agents here in the UK, and over in the States is that for the majority of UK agents, we still have to send hard copies.  To be honest, I don’t think that this is a bad thing.  Ok, so it means that process is probably quite a bit slower, and there’s the additional effort of making the presentation is just right, but there are some plusses in doing it this way.

A typical submission package consists of a cover letter, a synopsis, and the first three chapters of your MS, and if you want the work back, then an SAE.  There’s something very satisfying about physically preparing the package, going down to the Post Office and sending it. 

One of the other positives is that if your cover letter does manage to pique the interest of an agent, they have the first three chapters to hand already. 

What do you think?  Is the submission process in the States the way that they should be going over here?  Or do you long for a return back to hard copies?

Monday, 21 May 2012

Playing patience?

What do you know?  I finally seem to have learnt how to be patient.

I have just finished my 6th round of revisions on my WIP, and finally believe that it’s ready.  A large part of me is screaming at me to shove it in an envelope and to get it ‘out there’ as fast as possible. 


A smaller part, which I’m finding is being a lot more assertive, is saying hold on.... if it’s as good as I believe it is, then a few more days or weeks isn’t going to make any difference.  Let’s get it right this time.  Let’s make sure that the synopsis is spot on,   Why not have a couple of Beta readers take a look and confirm what you think.  In the mean time, I can check that my agents list is still up to date, and hone that covering letter so that the agent has no choice but to look at my accompanying chapters.

The small voice is winning so far.  And I have to tell you, that if I wasn’t already sitting down, I’d have to go and sit down before the surprise makes my legs give way.

Are you guys already there with the patient thing?  Is this yet another thing I’m playing catch up with? Let me know :o)

Monday, 14 May 2012

I should be so lucky, lucky, lucky.

I have always considered myself as a lucky person.  I seem to blunder through life with probably far too little thought about what I am doing, and where I am going, and still seem to end up landing on my feet, and finding that I have arrived at the best possible outcome.

I know that this could just be the result of me looking at the word through rose tinted spectacles, (and if that is the case, please don’t tell me – I like the view), but, yet again, I seem to have had a stroke of luck that has saved me a fair bit of work on my WIP that I would have had to do later, if I ever manage to get representation.

I tried to do some research on our nuclear defence in the UK.  For obvious reasons, the information is virtually nonexistent.  So, undeterred by the lack of information, I decided to make some logical deductions based on what I had managed to find.  My reasoning went that my YA readers would be unable to find out any more information than I had, and for the purpose of the story, it seemed credible enough. 

So far, so good, you might think.  I was feeling quite pleased with the story.  I passed a synopsis to my writing group, and it turned out that one of the members has written military articles about this subject!  I had been completely off track with my assumptions.  Luckily, he gave me a few pointers, and I now have a credible part to my story.

The question that I’m left with is...

Do you think that I was lucky that he knew exactly what I needed to know?  Or do you think I am finding things that aren’t there?