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Monday, October 25, 2010

What is Your Story's "What If" Factor?

I began writing “Alien Line” in 2007 now as year 2010 comes to a close it is complete.  Since declaring the manuscript done some months ago I have started this blog, done extensive research on how to write a query letter, on how to acquire an agent, on why writing conferences are important, on how to deal with rejection and read through numerous content posted on other writing blogs.  Great right?  In a way yes.  I must admit that this journey has helped me to hone my craft, something that is essential for a serious writer.  But still there are moments when I wish I could slip on a pair of glittering heels that would enable me to go back in time.  Back to year 2007 when I was staring at the dreadful blank page poised ready to type that first line.  I would tap that slightly younger me on the shoulder and relay as much of what I have learned about BANKABLE fiction as I could before those glittering heels pulled me back to the present.
And I would tell her to consider if the story idea is of the HIGH CONCEPT kind.  Meaning is this an interesting, simply understood idea that can be explained in a mere sentence or two?  I would even be so kind as to give her, me, whatever an example.
Resting after a long labor Sylvia wakes anxious to see her twin girls only to have her husband and doctor insist that she had been pregnant with only one baby. 
Easy to follow right?  And such a concept or pitch leads to a what if or why did type of question.  What if there was another baby?  Why did the husband and doctor lie to Sylvia?  As the glittering heels lit up, signaling that it was time for me to go, I would offer one last bit of wisdom: this is your baby but it will be someone else's product.  Write the story you have intended to write yet when the time comes know how to pitch this story.  Know your story’s what if factor.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Women in Science Fiction

I came across this intriguing post:  A look at the “all-new” science fiction reading list by Laurie Penny.  In her blog post Penny points out that a post by John Gray failed to include any female or minority authors.  She also touches on why the genre should be taken more seriously, that females are capable of writing noteworthy science fiction and want to read it too.  Happy reading, writing or whatever:)

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Just Not That Into You

For about a month now I have been searching for an agent.  You know that moment in your life when you look around and declare you want to be single no more?  Maybe a change in hairstyle, hang out spot or the type of person dated soon followed.  Essentially putting a polish on the situation in hopes of attracting someone good to then lead toward a relationship.  And eventually someone comes along.  You go out and have what you think is a nice time only to never get a call for that all important second date.  Do you give up?  No.  You go on dating until you find that right someone.
Well that is what hunting for an agent is like.  You have this manuscript that you've spent a large chunk of time polishing in hopes that someone will one day want to make some sort of commitment to it.  When you get a rejection instead of that “second date” it’s easy to get sad and go back to what you were originally doing.  Yet, just like with dating, if you did that you would never find Ms. or Mr. Right Agent.  So with each rejection received just think of it as one step closer to finding that something right.
Query letter advice: Agent Query
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