Monday, December 27, 2010

Getting Close to Querying!!

This is where I am in my writing journey...

I have decided last minute to add a new chapter/scene into my novel. It's not a make it or break it scene, but I think it's an important one to have and is befitting to the MC's character and expected actions. I have also been editing/revising/slashing furiously, all unnecessary words, sentences, and scenes. As soon as I finish writing this new scene, I will go through the entire novel for one last round of edits, which will involve getting rid of "Melanie words." You know what I mean. Those special words that every writer has a tendency to overuse--just, really, look, well, etc... Of course, these words vary from writer to writer. I know which ones are mine. :-)

As for my query, I can honestly say I went to hell and back during that process. I even shed a few tears, but alas, I have survived and now have what I think to be a kick-ass query thanks to some amazing feedback from a lot of people over in QLH. I'm just putting the final revisions/edits on that. My goal is to begin querying by mid-January, which gives me about 3 weeks. I know it's not a lot of time to finish my novel revisions, query revisions, and do my intense research on gathering the agents that will be a good fit for me and my work, but I think giving myself a deadline is important. People say, why rush? I don't like to think that I'm rushing, but that I'm giving myself a deadline like an agent or editor might do. I don't think there's anything wrong with that. It forces me to stay focused and do what I gotta do.

Where are you in your writing journey and what words to you tend to overuse in your writing???


  1. Good luck!! I don't think there's anything wrong with giving yourself a time goal. Otherwise, you can easily fall into the trap where you NEVER finish.

    I haven't started revising my novel yet but I noticed during the first draft that there were certain words and phrases I tended to use again and again. By the end, I would just put a # in front of each one because I figured at that point I needed to get the story down, not sit and stew over individual word choices. But during the revision process I'm going to have a lot of fun weeding all of them out...

    And I only saw the beginning of your novel on AW, but it was AWESOME. :)

  2. Awwww...thanks, Hayley!!! Yes, I think setting goals and deadlines for yourself is essential. Agents will give them to you. Editors will give them to you and I think it's important to get used to working in that sort of frame of mind. I know I tend to be a major procrastinator. I work well under pressure, and did a lot of last minute studying and papers in college and for my masters, but I don't think last minute work will fly in this field.

    I can't wait for you to post something in SYW! I'm dying to read your work.

    Thanks for stopping by and commenting. :-)

  3. So this is how you spent your Christmas vacation! I just went to QLH and caught up on all the versions, and I think you've just about got it, hang in there.

    My queries went out on the 17th, but I've only heard back from one so far. Not unexpected that even the agents with a fast turnaround will take longer over the holidays.

    I use too many "that"s, and then have to go back and take the majority out.

  4. Yay Mel! I'm so excited for you. I read the final query of yours, and I really think it'll grab some attention.

    Angelica's right, I read somewhere that most of the pub biz shuts down 2 weeks around christmas/new years. Smart of you to query after. ;)

    Keeping my fingers crossed for you!

  5. Haha, Angelica. No. I did not spend my Xmas vaca doing this stuff. Between the constant cleaning and cooking, I barely had time to be in my own thoughts. Things are just now calming down so hopefully I can get back into a groove. Best of luck to you with responses to your queries. Got my fingers crossed.

    And yeah, "that" is another one of those grrrr....words.

    Me Chelle My Belle :-) Thanks for the great suggestions you offered me in QLH. And my fingers, toes and eyes are crossed for you. I promise I will be doing some reading your project this week. Can't wait!!!!!

  6. Three focused weeks is an incredibly wonderful amount of time, to get a good amount of stuff done. Go you.

  7. Giving yourself a deadline is important because it keeps you focused, as long as you know that your manuscript is in the best shape possible when all is said and done. I have a list on my blog of words that I just went through if you're interested. And yay for getting your query done!!!

    Back to work now.

    Hugs :)

  8. Best of luck on the querying plunge!

  9. I need to start setting myself better deadlines and actually sticking to them, I had hoped to finish The List by now but there's still about 20K to do on it. At the rate I'm going you'll have an agent before I've even finished first edits.

    I have noticed that my characters seem to have one main expression; the smile. Everyone seems to smile far to much, it's just not normal for teenagers and I'm soo not looking forward to editing it all out.

  10. Thanks Adam!

    FIC...yes, I think goals are great, but I also know that life takes over sometimes. I guess the best thing to do is not look at, I have to get 20K done, but, let me get 500 words done today. 500 words sounds so much easier than 20K. I find for me, that setting realistic goals is more realistic. Like, don't let me focus on losing 25lbs. Let me lose 5lbs over the next 2 weeks. It's so much easier to attain if you cut the goals into baby steps. At least I have found that works for me :-)

    Funny about the smiles. I had that problem too.


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