Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Writing and Other People's Memories

I revealed my work on Strachan's Attic to my WAF ACW (Women's Air Force, Aircraftwoman) of World War II on Monday night. I was on the phone with her for over an hour, getting answers to odd little details that I'd never find online. She was utterly delighted that I'm doing this, seeing that - despite my totally different plot - I am more or less telling her story, and the stories of so many others from that time. I learned so much, and I'm glad I followed up with her. People want to explain their lives, even if parts of it are painful. I am indebted to her, my darling big sister.

As I was turning off the computer on Monday night, I took a quick look at my inbox and - lo, and behold! - I got a request for a partial from an agent! It was such a positive-sounding email, that I'm quite dizzy. The only odd thing, I think, is that she wants the chapters, bio and synopsis mailed to her. Perhaps the agency doesn't want its computers tied up with a big download. Do any of you know about this? I can understand it for the whole manuscript, but a few chapters aren't so huge. Please don't think I'm complaining - I would have rented a homing pigeon to deliver the package if they'd asked.

So I spent a great deal of time yesterday printing-off all the pages (slow printer), and I'm afraid I didn't even post my art blog yesterday (although I doubt anyone really noticed, and Squeakie Stone, featured on Monday, deserves all the exposure he can get).

I'll be heading off to the post office soon, and that's a first with mailed submissions from Brighton. Oh, and do you realize that it's impossible to send that SASE that agents need to return the material? Self-addressed envelope, sure, but Canadian stamps are useless for mailing from the States, so I'll enclose an international money order. Oh, and who says they'll want to return the material? Oh, I know - be practical - a partial is only a partial...

I remind you again, if you're at all interested, that both my novels are available to read at another weblink. I am offering it to some of my regular followers (you know who you are), so email me if you want to know what happens next with either book. Oh, and my thanks to Casey for her generous time in critiquing Strachan's first three chapters. She came up with some interesting and useful points. I haven't had time lately to look at other writers' excerpts, so I'm quite moved that she was so unselfish.

5 comments:

Eric said...

Congrats on the partial. Its good to hear about other authors having success, even if its just potential at this point. It keeps me hoping that when I get to that point, I'll also have some success. So keep up the good thoughts, and I'll keep some virtual fingers crossed for you.

Fran said...

Thanks, Eric. The Virtual stuff is always appreciated. Sneak an hour of writing in each day and - voila! - you'll have about 4,000 words, I promise. 24 weeks - 96,000words. First Draft Complete!

Melissa Marsh said...

Yay! I'm so happy that you had a request for a partial. Fabulous! I have had some request partials to be mailed, too.

Janet said...

Oh no! Not a money order! You can buy American stamps at the post office!

Fran said...

Janet, My little post office doesn't sell US stamps.

The agent responded with 'don't bother with the stamps' - is that a good sign? Sent the postal order anyway. Don't want to appear over-confident.