Thursday, September 17, 2009

On to the next stage

State of Mind? Resigned. Every word I look at, I think 'This is terrible! This is total dross!' But I'm thinking it is as good as it is going to get.

Where's my WIP? At the printer, having three copies made. One for me, one for a new reader, and one for my mother (who I can always count on to give me her honest opinion, whether it hurts or not).

Today I'll send out the third draft to two readers (see above). My new reader is an editor (of textbooks) and a real book lover. I'm hoping she can give me a fresh new opinion, particularly as I've done some heavy rewriting. My mother will also read it. Next week will see me sitting on my bed reading each and every page of my third draft out loud. I heard chapter 1 read out loud a week ago at a critique group and found it very helpful for picking up echo words, bad rhthyms, and the like.

I will also be polishing my synopsis. No joke -- I have no fewer than 17 different versions of the synopsis on my computer. I have conducted an obscene amount of research on writing the perfect synopsis and just last week, saw the best post I've ever seen on how to write one here. If you are looking for guidance, go check it out.

I will also start getting my query letters ready. I've researched agents (of course, hours, HOURS of research) and I've compiled a list of my top targets. I'll send out to the first 10 and wait to see what kind of response I get. That way, if they have feedback (please please please) I can make a change before sending to the next round.

I'm hoping that by then I'll have feedback from my readers and can make changes to the final (again, please please please) draft.

Goal: First 10 query letters out by October 12.
Truth: I am going to struggle with not sending the queries out before I make my revisions. I KNOW that is a bad idea. MUST BE STRONG! I may compromise and send the queries that don't require the first five pages. We'll see.


  1. Definitely try not to send queries until your 100% ready! Agent Ginger Clark had a twitter comment yesterday about how she requested someone's first 50 pages and then saw they made a Twitter comment about they had to rush out and polish those pages first.
    And I can totally relate to your state of mind. I always think everything I've just written is terrible.

  2. Oh, you are SO right and I know it. But it makes me all itchy to think about it -- I *really* want to send something out. But the truth is, I am WAY too an*l to send something out at this stage. I will be a very good girl and wait until I have perfect little packages, all checked off on my 'Agent Grid' chart. Sometimes being a little OCD is a good thing.

  3. I can't wait to be at the query stage. (I checked out your blog from your comment on Casey's blog)

    I am amidst seemingly endless revisions on a MG book, and trying to stay strong. My next project is calling.
    Good luck!

  4. Thanks for visiting, Heather. I know what you mean about the endless revisions. I keep asking myself when I get to stop because there are always improvements to be made, no matter how good it is. It seems like it could go on forever.
    Good luck with your MG book...I admire you for writing in that genre. I don't think I have the guts to write one. I have two children and I don't think I can get inside their heads enough.

  5. thanks for stopping by - love to find new blogs. good luck - querying is hard but can be exciting! :)