November, 2010

How I Got My Agent (Part 2: The Prep)

Research, research research the agents you want to contact.  Make sure these agents represent your genre, and make sure you follow the agents’ submission guidelines — every agent has a different set of submission requirements.

The fastest way to get a rejection is to query an agent who doesn’t represent your genre or to not follow submission guidelines.  And those are such easy mistakes to avoid! (Read more…)

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LTWF: When multiple agents make an offer

Goofy and I are back to wrap up our last post: When an agent requests your manuscript.  So please, put on your imagination caps (or Disney caps — whatever), and imagine the snide voice-over yet again!

Now onwards! (Read more…)

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How I Got My Agent (Part 1: The Parts of a Good Query)

So, it’s been a while since I signed with Nancy Coffey Literary & Media Representation, and I’ve yet to explain how it all happened.  One of the main reasons I waited was to prevent hurt feelings or coming across as rude, but…  Enough time has passed now that I think the rejected agents have forgotten all about me. (Read more…)

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You Wish: a book recommendation

5 out of 5 stars.

I decided as a LTWF contributor, I really ought to read one of Mandy Hubbard‘s books (since she’s a fellow contributor). Based on the positive buzz everywhere, I expected her young adult novel You Wish to be entertaining .  What I did not expect was to LAUGH CONSTANTLY.  Or to IDENTIFY SO MUCH with the main character.

Kayla is a high school sophomore with a distaste for the popular crowd (whom she calls the Old Navy dress clique) and a taste for Chuck Taylors. When her mom throws her an enormous and unwelcome Sweet Sixteen party, Kayla angrily blows out the candles on her over-the-top birthday cake.  She wishes that “for once in her life, all her birthday wishes would come true”. (Read more…)

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Thank YOU!

Happy Thanksgiving to my American friends.  I’m trying to celebrate here in Germany, but I don’t really have any of the usual foods.  Heck, I’ve got a chicken instead of a turkey.

All the same, I want to give thanks to all my online buddies.  I’ve met so many fantastic people — fellow readers, fellow writers, and fellow dreamers.  My blog, my twitter, and my writing-connections have grown a lot in the last year, and because of it, so has my smile.  (There’s a direct relationship between my grin and how many people I’ve befriended online.) (Read more…)

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LTWF: How to Write A 1-page Synopsis

One thing writers hate doing but will inevitably have to do (one day or another, at least) is the Dreaded Synopsis.

Specifically, the 1 or 2-page synopsis.  It’s hard to boil your whole novel into a few key sentences.  To convey the depth, the emotion, the literary power of your novel in 500 words or less — ce n’est pas possible!

Ah, but is possible my friends.  It’s possible and even fun if you’re like me.  For The Spirit-Hunters, I had to provide several agents with synopses, so I took workshops, read books, and wrote a few drafts until I had a gleaming 1-page book summary.  And after all that practice, I realized I had my own method (built from the methods of my various teachers, of course).

SOOOOO….  To use this worksheet, fill out the questions in sentence form. Though your story may not follow this exact format, try to find some critical event in the story that can be placed in that space.  You will likely notice that the worksheet is very similar to the Hero’s Journey (because most stories follow that format!), an I have filled out the questions using my All Time Favorite Movie as the example. (Read more…)

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Je t’aime

Today is the 1-year anniversary of when I got married.  Sorry, but I’m about to get all lovey-dovey. It’s for my husband, not you, so don’t puke your breakfast by reading on.  (Unless you want to, of course — read on, I mean.  Not puke your breakfast.)

One year ago today, my Frenchman and I said our vows in a city hall in the middle of the German countryside.  We didn’t have a wedding.  We haven’t had a honeymoon.  Those things will happen one day, when we have the money and the time.  A year ago, we simply wanted to get married because…well…we love each other.  And it felt right.

And so today’s post is for my Frenchman.

You’ve been the most supportive and amazing husband, and I thank you for it.  When I’m sick, you rush to the Apotheke for medicine.  When I’m tired (read: lazy), you do the housework all by your lonesome. When I’m hungry, you cook an elaborate and delicious French dish.  When I’m sad, you cheer me up with your goofy antics.  When I’m happy, you laugh and smile with me.  When I’m grumpy, you’re patient.  When I get homesick, you buy me a flight home.  When I speak bad German or French, you chortle and correct me.

When I couldn’t work in Germany, you gladly took over everything.  When I wanted an Irish setter, you said, “Sure.”  When I told you a year ago “I want to be a writer”, you said, “Okay.  What do I need to do to help you make it happen?”

I love you more than I ever thought I could love someone.  So thank you.

Happy Anniversary, my darling Frenchman.  Je t’aime.

-S.


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My Fairytale Castle

I told the Let the Words Flow gang that I’d share pictures of “my castle”.  I’m finally doing it today.

One of the many perks of living in Germany is that there are castles everywhere.  Seriously, everywhere.  They’re like Waffle Houses in the southern US or Tim Horton’s in Canada (sans the fast food, of course).

One of these castles is right next to my home.  I can literally see it from my window.  And, boy, what a view!

It’s a real fairytale castle (or Schloss, as they’re called in German), complete with ivy and roses.  At any moment, you expect Rapunzel’s hair to come rolling down from the tower window or Prince Charming to ride through the gates. (Read more…)

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Coffee Prince: a TV show recommendation

5 out of 5 stars.

So, if you know me or have followed the blog for long, you know I love Kdrama.  What is that?  It’s South Korean TV shows — usually romantic, usually funny, usually dramatic.  This show is one of those, and this is my new Favorite Kdrama.  That’s right, Coffee Prince beats out My Lovely Kim Sam Soon. (Read more…)

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I Heart ‘NSync

I have a confession: I used to be obsessed with ‘NSync.  Not just a tiny obsession either, but full-on fangirl.  I loved Justin Timberlake, and my 15-year-old-self was certain we were destined to be together. (Read more…)

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