A Writer’s Cautionary Tale

April 30, 2008 at 9:54 am | Posted in agents/ editors, Bria, career, writing | 8 Comments

 

Since I began writing I’ve heard the horror stories.

 

I sent in a query and never heard back.

Such and Such agent/editor has had my partial for nine months and still nothing.

She asked for sample pages and responded eleven months later.

 

So, when I sent out my query and thought “I’ll have a week of and then can start a slow read of my manuscript to take care of all the little stuff,” I didn’t think this would be a problem.

 

Then it began – the request for partials came any where from one hour and forty-eight minutes to not yet (two weeks later and only on the snail-mail queries.)

 

I’ll admit it. I’m shocked. I had been programmed to believe that the publish industry moves like molasses from start to finish. Apparently, it starts like shooting the rapids and slows to a meandering river.

 

And then the real shocker – A request for a Full (note the capitalization)

 

Now, with all the little things to do, I’ve canceled every other aspect of my life I could: Dinners with friends, hearing speakers, going to the movies, reading.

 

It’s amazing how long the ‘little things’ take. Sure, each one really does take just a second or two, but how many are there? Are you sure you got them all? Did changing one make you go back to adjust another?

 

So, take this as a cautionary tale. Polishing should be done before Querying. I know they say that, and we all think — “But I’m going to have weeks, maybe months, before I hear back from anyone.”

 

Don’t do it.

 

Learn from me.

 

And Go Write,

-bria

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8 Comments »

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  1. Congrats on the requests Bria! You aren’t the first writer to get caught like that. Just be glad the book is actually finished and you’re doing rewrites. Imagine if it were only the first three chapters!

  2. Thanks Barb – the excitement outweighs the panic by far. You only get your first request once, right?

    See you in two to four weeks at an undisclosed location to hear a yet to be announced speaker!

  3. Yes, ma’am. *jots down notes* I just need to finish something to the point where I can send it out. Good luck on that last minute spit polish. The response so far is fantastic!

  4. You go, Bria! Rock that full!
    -Jessica

  5. Hey, congrats on the Full request!

  6. Thanks everyone – I’m so darn excited I could. . . go to sleep. I’ve slept 4.2 hours in the last 48 but the full is to the CP for a last quick read and then off to the agency!

    Tina, it’s great to “see” you!

    Thanks for the support everyone!

  7. Congratulations! I was just surfing and found your blog. I didn’t have time to get to your newer stuff yet so I don’t know if you’ve been offered representation yet. Thanks for the head’s up about having a MS ready to go. I’ll come back and read your blog some more.

  8. Thanks Courtney-

    It’s a good thing to know since we all seem to only hear the waiting forever horror stories – definitely time your querires to be ready to go!

    I had a couple full requests, a bunch of partials, and some people I’m sending my MASSIVE OVERWRITE to as rewrites.

    I’m incredibly excited 🙂

    GOOD LUCK!


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