Why we read agent/editor blogs

Current word count: 30,261

New words written: 1,205

Words til goal: 9,739 / 314 words a day til the end of September

Wow! I’ve passed 30K Yay! I’m in the home stretch and wrote another chapter this weekend. I thought I had only four chapters left, but it has turned into five (for now) because I found a better place than I had planned for a nice cliff-hanger chapter change and a great place to switch POV in my two-POV novel. I’m on track to finish by the end of September, but secretly — well, I’m sharing this secret with you — I’m hoping to be typing THE END in about two weeks. We’ll see.

My other goal for this coming week is three-part:

  • Send out my entry to agent Colleen Lindsay‘s scholarship contest for the Backspace Agent-Author Seminar (deadline Sept. 4; have you entered?);
  • Send the picture book I worked on a couple weeks ago two an editor I met at the SCBWI Houston conference this year and another editor I met at a SCBWI writer’s retreat a couple years ago who read an early draft and said she’d be interested in seeing it again (conferences are invaluable — I highly recommend going, and expecially going to SCBWI conferences and joing the organization if you’re writing for children);
  • And send out query packages for my newly revised first novel.

For the first novel, I’m also going to try a new story description in my query letter. This is my send go around with this book, but this new version is a lot better than the first, so I’m hoping it will get more notice. My original query letter, which was sent to seven agents, got only one response for more, so I also hope for a better response rate with this new query letter. The story description is much better, I think. I’ll let you know how I do.

It annoys me that I didn’t see the problems with the novel earlier. I fell into the same trap I’ve warned against on this blog many times: sending out a book before it’s ready. But the problem is, I had done a LOT of work on the novel, lots of revisions, and I did believe it was ready. It was only until I was researching agents and read some of their comments that I saw the problems in my novel. I was reading things they said not to do and realizing I had done some of those things, hence, another revision.

This is a great reason why it’s good to read agent and editor blogs. You can get invaluable information WHILE you’re writing instead of when you’re researching to submit. Check out my blogs list to see the ones I read, and let me know if there are others you want to recommend and I’ll add them to the list. Keeping up with other writers’ blogs is great too, but to help your book’s chances during the submission process, read up what works and what doesn’t in agents’ eyes.

Write On!


2 Responses

  1. beth says:

    I always ALWAYS seem to send out a book to early. I don’t know why–or even how. I think it’s done. I believe it’s done. But when the rejection comes back, I totally see and understand why and go back to revisions. I have no idea why I can’t see it earlier, though, before I get a few rejections under my belt.

  2. Yeah, Beth, I know what you mean. I did multiple revisions with my novel before I sent it out the first time. But when I started the newest revision, I could see all these things that I knew I should have changed earlier. You live and learn. 🙂

What do you think?