As I mentioned on Friday, this weekend I participated in an Agent One-on-One boot camp where I submitted the first ten pages of my manuscript for Memory Lane. I then had to wait for the Agent I was assigned to get back to me with her Scene One report. She got it to me late Saturday and I was on the moon. In the e-mail itself she wrote: “Nice!”
In the report she said this about my strengths:
- Strong grasp of the elements of fiction
- Likable heroine
- Great action
- Interesting premise
Even typing it causes me to giggle madly. Add fast clapping of hands, and walla, I’m one excited woman!
Talk about an ego boost, a swift kick to my flagging spirit in getting Memory Lane published. She offered some suggestions, which I hurried to correct to make my first chapter go from nice to super! Whoo-Hoo!
Okay, deep breath, time to chill out. In truth, while this is a type of validation, an outside opinion that is not affiliated with me personally in any way, that shows I’m not wasting my time, it’s only a small win for me. Small because she didn’t ask to see more (yet, hey, maybe she needs a few days…. doubt it, but I can dream for the rest of this week).
She did give me a piece of great advice about finding myself an agent. For years, based on books and articles, I’ve assumed that doing the queries was enough and that hopefully I’d get lucky. That’s precisely the problem though hopefully I’d get lucky. Obviously I’m not, so I have to move to something more proactive. I asked her, how do we navigate the jungle of thousands of agents and she said that I need to do workshops like the one from this weekend, go to conferences, and hang out with writers who have agents.
In other words: NETWORK!
Doh! Networking? Really? Sigh, who has the time? I have a full-time job, I’m a mom with two kids that has to pay for summer camp that takes at least half of the pay I get from my job, but I have to pay it because I have a job (can we say vicious cycle anyone?). So there goes the conference unless I save my money and frankly, with everything else going on, that’s going to take a while.
Now boot camps and workshops, especially online workshops, that I can do. So that’s what I’ll do, once a month if they aren’t too expensive. I’ll reach out, I’ll get my ego boost, and hope that maybe, just maybe, I’ll connect with the right person at the right time.
Yeah, sounds like I’m hoping for luck again doesn’t it?
- On Validation, and why it’s okay for writers to want it (occupiedandpreoccupied.wordpress.com)
- Advance Submissions at Writers’ Conferences (whatifyoucouldnotfail.typepad.com)