Category Archives: Writing tips and ideas

Rejected query letters: Will you quit?

 

A local writer began a few years ago to send out query letters to publishers. She, like everyone else who does this, started to get rejection letters.

When I asked her after some time how it was going she informed me she was quitting, I learned she sent out six. Nothing I could say or do would convince her to keep going.

To be honest if you are going to give up that readily how serious are you wanting to be traditionally published or get a literary agent? How badly do you feel your book deserve a shot?

I was just really surprised how easily she gave up on herself and her book. Rejections from publishers are a rite of passage. It will happen. No one is immune.

To date this writer has not sent any more letters.

When I was submitting “Jasper, Amazon Parrot: A Rainforest Adventure” I received a lot of rejections. Some didn’t even send me a reply back. But I did something apparently that was odd according to other writers. I saved all my rejection letters. People tend to give me a weird look when I tell them that. But I have and will continue for any other manuscript I submit. To me it shows I am still trying, still believing in my book and myself and knowing that there is bound to be someone who loves my book as much as I do.

My mantra is still the same as it was when started. All I need is one yes, just one. In fact I have that taped up to my cork board by my desk. For if you don’t love your book, and I mean truly love your book, why would anyone else?

Developing your story: Characters and so much more

After taking a character development class the instructor passed out a form on how to critique the members of the group. That made me wonder. It would be awesome, in my opinion, if we could pass this on to our writing group members after they read what we presented to them. It would be also interesting to hand it out to reviewers prior to them submitting their reviews of our books. Granted that could get interesting but also informative.

 

What would you add or change if you did this yourself?

 

So if I could pass on a form this is what I would include. Each section is worth five points.

Plot

-Attention needs to be paid to plot development

-The story lacks credibility in places

-Good start/good ideas but loses direction and force

-The story holds interest throughout but the ending is disappointing

-Flows smoothly,well researched, almost there

-This is a well-crafted story and it is clear that the author has considered all the aspects of the plot

Characterization

-The characters do not always come over as real people

-Told from the viewpoint of too many characters, so that the readers learns little about them

-In general, the characters are believable , although there is room for improvement

-The characters are well drawn and true to life/does the character have an inner life

-Strong characterization means that the reader’s sympathies are instantly engaged.

Pace

-The story starts slowly

-The story needs a more varied pace

-Side-issues slow the story down

-In general, the story moves well, although there are times when interest wavers

-A good pace is maintained throughout

-This story’s page-turning quality is excellent

Dialogue

-The characters all tend to speak with the same voice

-Some attention should be given to the dialogue, which does not always ring true

-Although the dialogue is believable, there are places where it serves no obvious purpose

-In general, the dialogue sounds authentic

-the sharply written dialogue reveals much about the characters

-The dialogue is excellent, adding a sparking dimension to the story

 

 

I’m running a cover reveal tour: Jasper and I need your help

I am running a cover reveal tour from May 23th to September 7th of this year. I was fortunate to find a new publisher for my children’s series so this will be the 2nd edition. The books are being released in July so those who sign up after that will have a different media kit to use.

I am looking for people who might be interested in helping out with sharing the media kit I created and placing it on their blog or various social media platform.

Any help is appreciated.

I am absolutely in love with the new covers. They drew it from scratch and honestly I am blown away. My husband who does not get excited about stuff like this actually had a reaction when I showed him. “Wow, that looks good.” In other words high praise from the spouse.

So here is the link to the form I created. I thank anyone in advance who signs up or even considers helping out.

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLScQkH_bXs0j9FdBT5pGjquyzh1MkNeJxckEyo0aF0D_N7PidQ/viewform?usp=sf_link