Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Renewed Writing Vitality - That's What Friends Are For

Well, I've reviewed the agency's contract, and now the hard copy should be winging its way to me for signature. According to Malinda Lo, things are then largely out of my hands, and I should just get on with the next book. Her blog on how she got published is a good one, and, whether you're at that stage, or dreaming about it, you must read it.

I had mentioned to the agent that my other novel, Strachan's Attic, was close to completion, and they now have a synopsis and 30 pages to consider. They pointed out that most publishers prefer writers with more than one book, to prove they aren't that hackneyed "one-book wonder". Naturally, I hope they'll want it, too, but it's a totally different book, quite unlike Hafan Deg, and nothing is guaranteed.

Did my news of this past weekend make you sit up and take notice? I think so, by the number of comments. Are you now more determined than ever to get your own book picked up? You'd better be.

Melissa, of Grosvenor Square, told me that she was spurred on when I mentioned publishers' preferences for more than one book, and now really would be getting down to it. We've been exchanging critiques lately, and I think of her as my writing buddy. Considering that Melissa has already finished three novels (!) and is working on her fourth, she's almost home and dry, in my eyes. Although her prolific output is impressive, her writing is even more phenomenal. Now if she can just snag that agent...

Casey's blog, Literary Rambles has been featuring the querying process lately, and there are some good things there. She also had a good post she picked up from Query Tracker on researching agents that I thought you should look at. Again, although you know these things, it's a clarion call to getting the query process right, and it can't hurt to revisit the topic.

So, are you now looking at your own work with renewed vitality? I want that for you. We know the writing is the most important thing, but getting an agent, possibly publication, would make it all so valid, wouldn't it? All those solitary hours of frowning, weeping, laughing over your words would finally be rewarded publicly. Are you feeling that?

I've calmed down now, and will get back to Chapter 24 of Strachan's Attic today. Poor Strachan and the others were left dangling at a crucial point of the story last week, because I just couldn't get my head around this Agent Found thing.

Thanks to all of you for your good wishes - you commented and emailed - even Etsy artists from my art blog. It was quite overwhelming. But, after all, to quote the song - 'That's What Friends Are For', I guess.

“You have been my friend. That in itself is a tremendous thing...By helping you, perhaps I was trying to lift up my life a trifle. Heaven knows, anyone's life can stand a little of that."
- Charlotte, 'Charlotte's Web' —E. B. White (1899-1985); author.


cathryngrant said...

I can just imagine your feelings right now! Congratulations again and again.

Thanks for the links to query resources, I'll check them out - I expect to be ready to query agents in November.

I have another novel with a first draft complete, so thanks for the encouragement that it might be a help in the query process. Now I can stop viewing it as symbollic of how easily I'm side-tracked.

Melissa Marsh said...

Thank you, dear Fran, for the kind words. :-)

Casey said...

Good news like yours always spurs me on, Fran. I had a couple rough days with my revision this week, but I'm back on track and pushing forward with more enthusiasm than ever.

I refuse to let myself start something new. I can't afford to get distracted, but I'm tucking away ideas for my next novel and considering old projects that I've abandoned. I want to know what to dive into as soon as this one is out the door.

I'll be crossing my fingers that your agent loves Strachan's Attic as much as Hafan Deg.