13 August 2010

first date jitters

well, not that kind of first date. i will never have another first date (hopefully, anyway). no, this is an actual post about part of the writing process that scares the bejeezus out of me--querying.

i've queried twice already and twice i was rejected. my first query was to nathan bransford simply because he replies really fast and i wanted to get that first one out of the way. after that, i thought i'd be okay. kinda like in school when you first ask that cute boy/girl to dance after spending half the night working up the nerve only to be rejected. the idea of rejection becomes palatable at least, but the action rejection still stings. and then you get nervous. scared. you think that everyone's going to keep rejecting you, until you find the one who says "yes."

landing an agent is a LOT like dating, i've discovered. currently, i'm planning first dates for about 42 agents. i want to get the mood right, say all the correct things, stroke a few egos (at least of the ones about whom i can find more personal information). i need to package my manuscript to their needs, to make them more interested. hopefully ask for a second date (partial), or a third date (full). and then we can slowly slip into the ease of relationship. yes, there will probably be a few arguments here and there when i don't want to cut an entire chapter or rewrite the entire thing from the perspective of a dust mite--it's early, leave me be--, but there are also the rewarding times. like the book getting sold. it'll be nice to know that my agent has my back when trying to sell the book, when going through contract negotiations, etc. yeah. 'twill be nice indeed.

but only if i can get over these first date jitters. rewriting the query is like changing outfits. do i want to wear something that accents my curves or makes my eyes pop? what jewelry? what makeup? which shoes? do i focus on the character's inner struggles or the conflict in the big picture? should i bring romance elements in? is it punctuated correctly? are there any stupid errors? did i address it to the proper agent? cause let's face it. getting your date's name wrong = BAD.

i'm still trying to pick the right outfit. i'm not necessarily afraid of the idea of rejection. it's the actual rejection i'm not so thrilled about.

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