Tag Archives: literary agent

Feedback

23 Jan

….is food for the writer. It even has the word ‘feed’ in it. As a writer/author feedback is very important for your growth, but also for the growth of your story. Every draft you write takes you closer to the version that it was meant to be in the first place. It’s like creating a sculpture out of lifeless lump of clay. You can see what it’s supposed to be, and it will take a while to get it there.

After almost two years of being swallowed up by my new work, querying has taken a backseat. But now that I feel like I’ve got the hang of that thing we call Real Life, I’m back in the game. As I’m still querying the first novel in my cosy mystery, I’m already working on the second. At first I thought that was pointless, because I haven’t even published my first novel yet. I have the luxury, however, of being able to work on multiple stories, so it’s not like I can’t query more novels as a plan B. Also, I let a very critical friend read it and her boyfriend heard about the story and wanted to read it too. Now they’re both hooked and he kept asking me when I’d write the second novel. If that isn’t motivational, I don’t know what is. I also considered it a good exercise of my writing muscles without the pressure of knowing I want an agent to look at it. So I put finger to keyboard and mind to page and here I am…I have a murder in a hotel, an emotional mystery writer, and a love interest who is getting closer to making his move. Yay, the excitement.

What’s even more exciting is the feedback. I mean, after not playing with my characters for a while, it’s nice to know I still got it. And hearing that it’s well-written and just drags you in is just the thing you need to hear. Not just as an ego boost but also because it’s important to know when you’re on the right track. That’s equally important to knowing you’re not. Also, because my beta readers are impatient, I send them a few chapters each time so when they pick up on an inconsistency, I can immediately change it. I’m still going to let more beta readers ravage it, but only after I’m done. In the meantime I’m so happy to reconnect to my characters and let them grow even more.

More murders, more fun. Wait, that sounded psycho. I really must be a writer, then.

The 2015 Plan

30 Sep

Okay, this might sound more exciting than it really is, but if I call it less than a plan, I probably won’t do it. I even wrote this down in my notebooks so you KNOW I’m serious.

Maybe you’ll recognise this, but I’ve got a list of stories. *clears throat* One bloomed in my mind during my MA in Creative Writing when I had to write the beginnings of a story and it had to be literary fiction. It’s not really my thing, but a story of a young girl with multiple personality disorder knocked on the door of my mind. I only had to write the beginning but I managed to finish the first draft. Then there are the two stories that I’m querying. Since I still don’t have an agent, I’m bringing out the big guns at critique groups to get some hardcore feedback. Then there is a YA urban fantasy novel I finished but has one loose end I still need to finish, and a novel of which I need to rewrite the ending. UGH. Especially that last one is going soooo slow. What is wrong with my muse? Is she drunk again?

So, that leaves four novels that I’d like to reread and possibly edit before I feel like they’re as good as can be. Not all of these I intend to try and get published. The story about the girl with multiple personalities and the YA urban fantasy are Wattpad stories because I don’t intend to write those genres. The latter already has three chapters on Wattpad and hopefully it will be as fun for people to read as it was fun for me to write. It was one of my very first stories so it’s kind of special. *blows nose*

Anyway, before this year is over, I want these four novels to be truly finished. Or at least, as finished as can be. It feels like no novel is truly finished sometimes, but that doesn’t mean it can’t be done. Feel free to send me encouragement on Twitter, because I need it. At some point you get so out of a story, that it’s hard to get back in. It’s like your characters have had enough and changed the locks on you. *adjusts writer socks* Still, they haven’t met my pet dragons yet. Or my inner dragon for that matter. Wish me luck!

Meh-Ness of the Creative Mind

28 Feb

Those days where you want to change the world with your words, whether it’s with your social media or a new story idea. Whatever it is, it gets you all excited and you think about what it will be like when you’ve build up this legacy and quite possibly also have a butler. Or three. Those moments are good because they inspire. They inspire you to be the best and kick some ass.

Or at least, that’s what they’re supposed to do. I mean, they do inspire me, but also they make me feel guilty for when I don’t end up changing the world in one afternoon. Because most of the time it’s daunting to think of all that you want to achieve and to know that it will take long. Not to mention that it takes a lot of effort and luck. It can be paralysing. Which is why I usually end up building a virtual village or raising Sim babies.
When you’re writing just for fun it’s easier because there is no pressure. However, pressure can also be good, so how do you make it so that pressure becomes the same as motivation?

The goals are still important and it would be good to consider those goals every once in a while. Ask yourself what you really want to achieve with your writing and before you write, meditate on those images. If you’re a realist, you might think that it will never happen, and I suppose it’s good not to get your hopes up, but also add that you can eat least TRY. Because the trying part is probably more fun than the actual achievement. If we do achieve our dreams, don’t we want to look back and know we’ve EARNED it? I know I do.

On the other hand it also helps me to just turn on some music, daydream about my story and get excited about it again. It depends on my mood, but sometimes I don’t need to think about the future, I just need to be in the moment and write for my story. After all, I like my characters so I want to do my best for them. The story deserves it, so do its inhabitants.

Which means that my advice today is a bit contradictory. It depends on who you are and what your current mood is, but both result in motivation. But here is one more tip. There’s a difference between the lack of motivation or simply having dust in your creative mind. If the Jar of Words is empty, my advice is simple: READ A DAMN BOOK. I hate to be all cliché, but books make for the best inspiration in the first place.

Hopefully my scattered ramblings all over this post help you, because right now my brain feels all dusty. I am going to refill my Jar with Haruki Murakami and then I’ll play with my characters. After all, I have an agent interested in my work, and if that isn’t a good kind of pressure, I don’t know what is.

 
GOOD LUCK, WRITERS!

 

weird writer

Resolutions of a Weird Writer

29 Dec

It still feels like 2010 so why are we already tumbling into 2014? Think about it, next year it will be 2015! Anyway, let’s try not to realise too much that time is flying by faster than a pet dragon. Today’s blog post was a request regarding my new resolutions to do with writing. This is a bit difficult for me, but it made my pet dragons purr, so I’ll give it a go.

Resolutions of a Weird Writer:

  1. Despite my busy life that tugs at me from all corners of the room, I shall write at least once a week and it shall be glorious. (Not the writing itself, but at least the act of writing.)
  2. I shall get a literary agent this year. Even if I have to clone myself, go back in time, leave my Non-Mini Me to become a literary agent and return to my time, just in time (ha!) to get taken on as a client by her. Me. Her. Well, you know what I mean.
  3. I shall finish all my To-Write stories on my To-Write list. Really, I will. Truly. Stop narrowing your eyes at me. I will!
  4. I will start writing in my notebooks, with all my favourite pens instead of savouring them (because they are too pretty) and petting them when nobody is looking. What?
  5. I will get my teaching license. And yes, that does have to do with writing, because once I’ve got my second MA, then I’ll be able to write until I pass out. Happily, of course.
  6. I will get a literary agent. Or did I already mention that?
  7. I will finish polishing my cosy mystery.
  8. I will read more this year. Like a glorious beast I shall devour those books one by one.
  9. I will join a critique group. It would be so much fun (once I have the time) to have a gang of loyal and honest writer friends who enjoy my work and love to pour criticism over my stories. And I will have to enjoy their stories, as well. I don’t like the I’ll-read-your-story-if-you-read-mine thing because then it’s a chore. And I already have enough of those.
  10. I WILL get a literary agent. (I have to mention it three times, it’s lucky.)

Now, I’ve told you mine, but what are yours?

 

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On The Short Story Train

3 Oct

The wonderful gift that is short stories. Right now they are my life ring in the sea of WORK that is trying to drown me. Okay, it’s not that bad, especially since I’m staying afloat and every little victory is a big one for me.
In any case, you can imagine that the act of writing can sometimes slip past me like a rat with a little hat on. So, I’ve decided to do something which doesn’t come that naturally to me (anymore). It’s writing short stories.

Ever since I’ve started writing full-blown novels, I find that I can only think ‘big’ now. So this is a nice challenge and I find that I can easily write 2k in a day, because I’ve been craving to type those words that are about to explode in my mind and because I know where I’m going (it’s a short story, so easier to plan).
In any case, I can highly recommend this to people who are busy and still want to exercise their Writing Muscles. I’ve also made a blog with my short stories on it, so it’s also a good way for people to check out my writing and see if they like my style. *tries cool moves* *falls over*

Even though I’m still looking for a literary agent, I’m not in a hurry, especially with my new responsibilities and this way I still get to do what I love. Write for the sake of writing.

So if you’re in the same boat, or cruise ship as I like to say, then consider jumping on the Short Story Train. We have cupcakes.

 

writing-a-novel

Finding a Literary Agent

16 May

The mere thought of finding a literary agent already makes me mentally hide under my bed. On the other hand, the thought of actually getting a good agent makes my muse put a gun to my head so I write like my life depends on it, but you know, in a good way. A while back I researched all literary agents in the UK to make a top three for myself, based on the kind of genres they represent. I’m quite the eclectic writer and want to try my hand at a wide range of genres. Why not? The stories that drop by my muse aren’t tied to a label, they just are. And they are also relentless, but again, in a good way.

Anyhow, when I started to slack off a little in the writing cave, I started looking up the website for my number one literary agency to check it out and get myself excited to finish my story. But when I saw the website and the info on the agents, I just wasn’t feeling it. I know I must have checked it out a while back, but I was looking at a lot of websites and focussed more on the genres they represented than their overall vibe. Now that I was actually looking into it and checking out their agents, I realised this wasn’t my number one choice anymore. I just always feel that you have to follow your instincts, especially with something as important as this. I mean, trusting your book with a stranger is quite scary.

So the hunt began again! I sharpened my spear, put some mud on my face and dove into the deep forest of literary agents. And now I’ve found two really good agencies that I’ll be contacting and my writing groove is back too. I guess it goes to show how important it is to research as many agencies as you can and find the right one. Because even though the original first-place agency seemed good on paper, it just didn’t seem to fit when I read more about them. In any case, the internet helps to explore the wonderful world of literary agents in great depth. And the only way to find out if an agent fits is to talk to them and for that I have to finish my story. So, excuse me while I tie my muse to my desk and get back to writing.

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