First 250 Insights

Now that the feedback for the second round of PitchSlam entries has gone out, I thought I’d share some feedback about things that worked and didn’t work for me.* Common Issues I Spotted: Starting in the Wrong Place: There are many ways that this pops up. I truly think that finding the right place to start […]

Pitch Insights

With the first round of PitchSlam behind us, I thought I’d share some things I noticed going through the pitches. Hopefully, some of the contestants can use this information when revising their pitches before the next round. A Round of Applause for the Entrants. You should be proud of yourselves. Some amazing pitches were submitted. A […]

Creating an Elevator Pitch

Every writer has probably heard of the elevator pitch, but basically: if you find yourself in an elevator with your dream agent or editor, how would you explain your story in a couple of sentences? As I mentioned earlier, PitchSlam starts soon (tomorrow, actually!) PitchSlam is a query contest that lets writers receive feedback along […]

Staying Positive

Writers are no strangers to rejection. It’s part of the game. Every contest, only a small percentage of the entries can be chosen. Agents reject something like 99% of queries they receive. Then they reject something like 99% of partial and full manuscripts they receive.* Even after finding an agent, it has to find the […]

The day I understood subjectivity

With a few awesome contests coming up soon,* I want to take a minute to talk about subjectivity. It took me a while to really get it. Everyone says that querying is subjective. That publishing itself is subjective, and that a rejection of the work is not a comment on the writer’s ability, the plot, […]

Killing Time in the Trenches

I’ve got many friends still in the query trenches, experiencing the roller coaster. There are a lot of ups and downs. There’s also a TON of waiting. Waiting, waiting, waiting. When he started querying, he still had hair. So now, I offer a list of ways to keep from going crazy while waiting for news. […]

Writer’s Envy

I’m not talking about when someone else lands an agent before you or gets a six-figure deal (although it would be perfectly natural to be a little jealous in those situations). This post is about jealousy when your friends all get to write and you don’t. I’m about neck-deep in edits right now. I’m editing […]

Nightmare on Query Street

I said it was coming, right? Anyway, Nightmare on Query Street is a contest to help writers and agents find each other. There are currently seven agents signed up, with more to come. 1. Contests are loads of fun. Seriously, I can’t talk up contests enough. Contests are like an amazing dance party for introverts […]

After the Call, Part 2

(continued from After the Call, Part 1) So, at the end of my last post, I had two offers, 5 agents reading, and a few days to make a decision. But I was torn, because I knew I’d choose Agent2 even if the other 5 all came back and loved it. I wondered if I […]

After the Call, Part 1

We’ve talked about Getting the Call. What happens next? (I mean, after all the jumping up and down and screaming and dancing and acting like a maniac.) Well, there’s a lot of stuff that has to happen in the week between getting The Call and giving your financial decision. When Agent1 offered, I had one […]

My Querying Stats

Many people saw my Getting the Call story when it was initially published after Query Kombat. (If you didn’t, go read. It’s OK. I’ll wait.) Here are my final numbers. Queries Sent: 67 Fulls Requested: 14 Full Requests Due to Offer Nudge: 2 (included above) Partials Requested: 3 Contest Requests: 10 (not included in partials) Form Rejection/No Response: 33 Personalized […]

Hey, look, I finally set up a website!

No, really, I did. And once I get the format figured out, I’ll post some real content. Meanwhile, have you heard of Nightmare on Query Street? It’s an awesome writing contest, coming soon.