I Have An Agent!

Back in June I started sending agents query letters and excerpts of my YA novel in the hopes of finding someone to represent me. I got radio silence from a few agents, but I wasn’t deterred. I got a few full manuscript requests, which I sent out with fingers crossed.

“The websites say it could takes agents weeks – even months – to answer queries,” I said to myself (out loud) on more than one occasion, reduced to a bundle of nerves. And then, only a few days ago, I happened to see these two tweets that caught my eye:

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Honestly, I took a screenshot of them and sent them to my mom and boyfriend. “Do you think these are about my manuscript? See the movie slate?”

(My novel is set in Los Angeles and my main character is fixated on film and Hollywood culture)

And now, I am so happy to say, the writer of those tweets (Brent Taylor of TriadaUS) is my agent! Could you tell that this is where the story was going? Did the title of the post give me away?

After talking to Brent for the first time I was blown away by how much he seemed to understand and care about my main character and my novel. I can’t wait to dig into revisions and work with him to make the story the best that it can be!

So to all of you out there querying: Good luck! Keep at it. Don’t get discouraged. Also, take advantage of the awesome community that is Twitter, which helps connect agents, editors, and writers in new and interesting ways. I also highly recommend checking out Manuscript Wish List and the #MSWL hashtag to see the kinds of stories agents and editors are looking for! I hope you find your perfect match.

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Taking the Leap

I can’t believe I finally got here.

I’ve started querying agents concerning my YA novel, Another War Year. After working on this story in various forms for years, it finally feels complete.

And it all suddenly feels so much more real.

I’m thankful that during my time at undergrad as a creative writing major I had the opportunity to learn about the ins and outs of querying. I’ve also loved taking part in Twitter and web events like #PitMad and, today, #Pg70Pit. These events give agents and editors a chance to check out stories they might be interested in a new and exciting way.

You can learn about #PitMad on Brenda Drake’s site here.

And check out #Pg70Pit on Lara Willard’s site here.

I hope some of you other writers will take advantage of events like this! I’ve been having a lot of fun so far and I’ve had a few agents reach out for samples.

Now here’s hoping these agents like 90s nostalgia, movie trivia, and super conflicted protagonists!

BONUS: Please enjoy this photo of me sitting on The Iron Throne last week.

Day 285 - June 25, 2016

Life Lately: June

For the last few months I’ve been in a bit of a creative slump. I’ve been trying to sort out my feelings about blogging. I started BiblioSmiles after college as a creative outlet, when I was still searching for a full-time job. I had a lot of time to devote to reading, writing, and blogging. I’m so glad I created the site, and I am so thankful to my friends for being supportive and for submitting their own content! I’ve loved having a place where people can showcase their writing and reviews.

But working in publishing full-time takes up a lot of energy, and I realized when I did have free time to work on my creative writing endeavors, I felt compelled to write blog posts instead. I felt trapped in the schedule. 

So BiblioSmiles will stick around for when I have a review I want to share, or if any reader wants to get their work out there. I’m always happy to provide a place for that! But I decided in May to take a step back so I can focus on my writing, and I’m so happy I did.

My YA novel is all polished, and I’m thrilled with the results. Yesterday I took a new step:

I joined the #PitMad hashtag on Twitter and sent my query letter to two literary agents.

So scary, but so exciting! Querying an agent – formatting my submission and preparing an excerpt – made the whole idea of novel writing a lot more real in my mind. I feel like I’ve been woken up after sleeping for too long; I’m so eager to move forward! 

And even if I only get rejection, I welcome this step. I welcome any feedback I can get. I’m putting myself out there, and I have never been happier.

Life Lately…

I’m so thrilled to have had the opportunity to read at the second Breadcrumbs Mag reading last week at Pete’s Candy Store in Brooklyn! The turnout was great and it was so much fun to celebrate the release of the second edition of the print zine, The Trail.

Here’s a photo of me reading taken by Ebba Zajmi Gjergji. I love it!

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Unfortunately NaNoWriMo has been a no-go for me this year. I’ve been outlining an idea and writing a few snippets of scenes in a notebook, but I haven’t really sat down to write. I don’t think I’m going to put the pressure on myself to start working on a new novel right away. But it’s nice to be thinking of something new!

Speaking of novels: I finished my first draft of my YA novel in October! What an exhilarating experience. I’ve been working on different versions of this story for the last four years, and to finally have it at a point that feels complete is so incredible. I’ve passed the manuscript along to some friends in the hopes that their notes / critiques will help jumpstart the editing process.

On the non-writing front: I’ve been seeing TONS of movies, and reading lots of books, and trying to spend time with friends. I can’t believe November is halfway over! Hope the month’s been treating you well.