Monday, June 15, 2009

Querying Two Novels - How tricky is that?

I wrote over two chapters this weekend (6,600 words) in my effort to move my main protagonist, Strachan, permanently back to the modern world. She doesn't want to go, so I'm stuck in the 40s for a little longer. I remind you that I am at the mercy of my characters. This week is crunch time. Who's the Momma here?

Soon, probably by fall, I should be querying agents for two novels. You can't query them together, because they don't want to know about your second until they've sold the first, but it makes life a little easier for me, this round. I've researched and approached so many agents, that it will be relatively easy to identify the true possibilities. I know who doesn't respond at all (a bit rude, I think - the bottom of my list), and the tone and substance of rejections, so the most approachable will be at the top.

But what if you sent out one book to a new agent on your list who hated it, when she might have loved the second? I suppose, depending on the quality of her rejection, you simply shoot back a second query, saying something like, "Well, I do have this other one, by the way, which could be more your style..." I mean, you've established contact, right? That's one of our biggest challenges.

I know a lot of you have written more than one book, yet to be picked up. How do you deal with it? Or, if you're in the same boat as I am, how will you deal with it, when the time comes.

As it is now, I end my query letter with, "This is my second novel. The first is currently being revised." So far, no one has sent a rejection with the postcript, "Oh, do send us details on your other book when it's ready, as perhaps we'll like that one much better."

We writers are an over-imaginative lot, aren't we?

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Quotes to Consider

"If you would not be forgotten, as soon as you are dead and rotten, Either write things worth reading, or do things worth writing." ~Benjamin Franklin

"Well behaved women rarely make history."~Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

“A ship in harbor is safe, but that is not what ships are built for.”~William G.T. Shedd (1820-1894), theologian, teacher, pastor

"It is common sense to take a method and try it. If it fails, admit it frankly and try another. But above all, try something." ~Franklin D Roosevelt (1882-1945), 32nd U.S. president

“Adopt the pace of nature: her secret is patience.”
~Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), essayist, poet, philosopher

"Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover." ~Mark Twain

"You miss 100% of the shots you don't take."
~ Wayne Gretzky