Any other writers out there mad at the process of querying? I’m sure there is at least a few out there. Those who don’t know what querying is… to put it simply it’s a cover letter tailored to pitching our book and ourselves to an agent. That person if they like your work and are hooked by the ONE PAGE letter might ask for more. Now, some are a little more reasonable and ask for the first ten pages or first three chapters. The operative word being little in that sentence. For what you get in reply to most is complete silence. You heard me right. Most don’t bother to even send if they rejected it or not. The few that do will give you a form rejection… ironic (the nicest word I can come up with) when they ask us to customize every letter written to them. The few criticisms I’ve gotten from responses are “well it didn’t really hook me in” or “it’s more showing then telling”. And all I have to say is… well duh. You don’t create a whole new world and just blaze through details. That’s how confusion happens. On top of this we have to set up the story no matter the genre. No one is going to care if someone is randomly running away or fighting an unknown assailant… for the reader is not invested on either side to win. Now, maybe this works for some stories, but I can’t think of a really good one that fits that description. There’s always an explanation of character, places, rules, and motives within the first couple chapters. Although it might not be the most fun to read at first… It’s necessary for understanding how the rest of the tale flows. Honestly, the whole process makes me distrust traditional publishing. They seem set on the same old same old, not producing anything fresh or exciting. Even scarier is it seems it wants to follow the trends of movies where action is in favor of telling an actually interesting development of characters and compelling plots which twist. It makes one set their eyes on a different path of self publishing. However, this requires much more expertise in fields I’m not entirely strong in. Not to mention the cost. I have much to think about and I hope my fellow writers find their way to being published.
A year, a whole year has gone by since I started this site; my attempt to hone my craft and get some insight. Confidence is mostly what I have found oddly enough. For despite having many rejections, it is never on the grounds of the story being bad. They all agree that it is quite good, but just does not feel like their book to champion. Then there is all of you reading. Your support has meant a lot; to know that others enjoy my work enough to follow every bit of content I post makes all the difference for me to keep moving forward. I have yet to achieve my dream, but with all you behind me I know I can grasp it. So, thank you for following, liking, and sharing my writing to those you know.
Now on a far less serious note, you may have noticed that in the past month I had not been posting. There is a perfectly logical explanation for this factor. Simply said, I kind of got lost in a whirlwind of ideas. For some reason, I was struck with ideas for several books, a theme park, short stories, and the most nerdy of them all, a Pokemon region. Before I go any further, I do not own the rights to the Pokemon franchise or speak for that company. I hope that was good enough to not get me in trouble. Since it was quite like a whirlwind; I am going to split them up below and let you know how I was working on each.
-Books: First up is the one I most work on, which is writing books. I continued working on my second book in my Scales series along with coming up with new ideas for future stories. Those included in such genres as science fiction, political fiction, a super hero series, and a pretty funny comedy. I cannot give you the details just yet until each is finished cause i do not want any raccoons stealing my ideas. (My nice way of saying thieves without saying thieves.)
-Theme Park: As said at the end above, I cannot give you too much information on this one either until it is finished. However, I will tell you that unlike my other projects, I am working with others to complete it. Hopefully, it can be completed to our satisfaction and presented to a company for further analysis on its worth. As of right now, three rides have been designed, a theme has been decided, a couple fun events have been planned to be done in the park, unique food, and some interesting gift shop ideas. I do not know if it would become a reality, but the group and I are going to give it a shot.
-Short Stories: I do believe that I have come up with enough epic retelling ideas to form my collection that I was going to tried to get published after my first book. They can be a bit darker, but it brings a classic mythological twist to stories we are all familiar with. I do hope you have enjoyed reading them thus far. I may post one or two more to this site, but that is still up in the air; don’t want to give you too many or you might not buy the book when it comes out.
-Pokemon Region: Again, I do not own the rights to Pokemon or speak on behalf of its company. Growing up, playing the games was a way to escape from the world and engage in a far more imaginative one. Starting out with my grass starters on my journey through new lands and creatures. It is partly what drew me to writing fantasy stories in the first place. The new games are coming out soon and it made me think on a region idea they had not done yet. So, I started making the Pokemon and coming up with the enemy team that our young heroes would have to face. Thus far, I think I am almost up to one hundred new Pokemon made for this idea. When I have it all finished with the complete story and Pokedex; I do intend on contacting the Pokemon Company/Gamefreak/Nintendo/Creatures and pitching my idea to them. That would not be for some time from now, but I will keep you posted on that endeavor.
As you can see I am keeping myself busy as always. Thank you again for all the support that you give and I sincerely apologize for neglecting this site the past couple days. I look forward to sharing with all of you more in the next coming year. Keep dreaming and forging ahead.
Hello again my friends. My apologies for the recent thread of no posts this week. This is entirely my fault since I have been focusing on sending as many query letters as I can manage between shifts at work. Now for those of you who do not know what a query letter is, I shall explain. Basically, it is a cover letter that is specifically addressed to a literary agent. To explain further, in this short one page letter you are trying to prove/ show off why this agent should be interested in your book. It is important that they feel a connection to your story to invigorate them to really sell your tale. Now, how does one capture and retain the attention of one of these individuals? See I have no idea. My personality lends itself to not really be the boastful type, making this sort of thing not up my alley.
In my personal view, one must test the merit of a writer by his work. Most agents, I feel, would agree with this statement, but that would mean the poor individuals would be reading at least five hundred books a month. I don’t even think I could reach fifty books in a month if I had nothing else to stop me. To help them manage this massive task, they limit the amount they first have to read to the first three chapters of said books or the first ten pages. Fair enough, one needs to get a feel whether or not one will connect to the story from the very beginning. For the most part, I sincerely feel like this system does truly work for most novels. However, I do not think this works for those of us that write in the way of worldbuilding. Not only in the first three chapters do we have to introduce the characters that one will fall in love with, but a world in which one will get lost in its wonder. This leads me to also notice a trend among agents. One will find, at least from what I have seen, not many that represent fantasy or science fiction; both of which usually involve a fair bit of worldbuilding. Makes one wonder how to find that one agent that will be your partner to success.
Finding an agent is a daunting task and a journey that every writer must take; knowing that the quest, unlike our own tales, is not in our hands. We have to learn to trust someone else to judge in a quick glance whether or not to represent us; being ready to take several rejections for not being quite the right fit. But fear not my friends, most of these agents are very kind. From the rejections I have personally gotten, they encourage me to keep trying and can definitely see that my story will be published. Words of encouragement that I think every writer would be elated to hear. So give it your all as you continue to chase your dream. To all those agents that look letter after letter, I say to you thank you. The entirety of your job is to give us the opportunity to live out our dream, share our tales, slide in some lessons, and connect with people when sometimes we find to be hermits. Without some of you, the stories we grew up with and inspired by would not exist. Continue doing what you do and hopefully I will be a partner with one of you very soon.
Never stop trying to achieve your dream, for why wish them in the first place?
KC J. Hutchins