Like many of my fellow writers, I have quite a few manuscripts boxed up, novels that failed to find a home. And it wasn’t for lack of trying on my part. I sent them off to literary agents and publishing houses, hoping they would be taken in, nurtured, edited, sent to the press and released into the world to soar above the clouds. But the simple fact was they weren’t good enough. (There, I’ve admitted it.)
Looking back, I see now the first one was terrible, the second a little less so, and so on and so on, until now, the sixth one I have completed is undergoing an intensive reworking. Incorporating the advice of two beta readers, a professional–but very affordable–editor, and my own ideas for improvement, I am now about three-fourths through yet another draft. It won’t be the last, but future sweeps through my WIP should take considerable less time. Continue reading
Literary agents come in all shapes and sizes and tastes in reading material.
For example . . .
Many years ago when I first started writing, I completed a novel (Admittedly, not a very good one.) and began submitting it to literary agents. On probably about my twentieth attempt, I received a request from a well-known agency asking to see the full manuscript. Lord, was I ever excited. Then excitement reached a whole new level, moving on to ecstasy when queried agent called to say he loved my manuscript and wished to work with me on bringing it to publication.
He made several suggestions on improving the story, which I incorporated, then sent the edited version back to him. And it was at this point he informed me he was a junior agent and had to get approval from his higher-ups on my manuscript before he could take it on, and well . . . that didn’t happen. Continue reading