Monday, September 27, 2010
I WANT TO BE A TERRIBLE WRITER, SERIOUSLY.
My MS wasn't ready.
Form rejections, mixed contest results, unbiased CP feedback, I took in all in.
The opening to my novel, By Grace Alone, has been re-written. I am knee deep in re-writes to reflect the changes. I'm having a blast.
To be honest, I haven't felt this good since I finished my first draft.
Recently, I've been meeting with local writers. Cyber connecting is great. You're here reading this. However, something can be said about getting out their physically to meet your peers.
In a discussion group today a chat started about the Query process. Well, my hand goes up like Horshack, waving and oooh oooh ooohing.
A few comments later, I gulp.
The number of fellow writers who vented frustrations about LITERARY INTERNS made me nervous. Apparently they are more common than we think.
Our QUERIES most likely are read by INTERNS before ever getting to the AGENT.
Now, I am not sure how that makes me feel.
I am NO Agent or an Intern. I will not presume to understand how many queries they see and how many are just plain awful.
But we work really hard and we now depend on interns?
Some may not even have enough life experience to connect with our work. Their taste decides whether we get into the VIP club- the Agent's desk.
On TWITTER one of these interns complained about PROLOGUES and how they are unnecessary.
The debate on them is vast and oh so deep. Been there, argued that.
My MS has a one page prologue.
Before you chime in, here are some NYT Bestsellers with Prologues: The entire TWILIGHT series, THE BRIDGES OF MADISON COUNTY, ANGELS & DEMONS, THE DA VINCI CODE (The Bestselling book of all Time), A BEND IN THE ROAD (Most Nicholas Sparks novels), James Patterson's THE SWIMSUIT (been on the NYT BS list for a couple of years).
I start a chat with this intern. A polite one, seriously. I ask why do WE aspiring writers hear how much agents hate PROLOGUES and yet I keep reading them. Reading them in works that are very successful. Said intern asks what books have them and I list the above. Her response, all good stories but TERRIBLE WRITING.
They are all in my library. They were great reads. Love them. Won't let people borrow them. The TWILIGHT series is my kids. Haven't read but seen the movies. I know, I know. I'll read them sometime. But back to my rant.
Terrible writing? TERRIBLE WRITING?????????? I keep going back to this. How terrible can they be if millions of people have read them, loved them, and HOLLYWOOD even made them into movies?
Now, they're not Literary snooze fests or Pulitzer Prize winners. I know that. But I am a commercial fiction reader. Very proud of that.
Who is this INTERN to say what makes TERRIBLE WRITING? I mean to say that actual successful authors are TERRIBLE? I wonder if she's passed on any GOOD STORIES for the agent she works/interns for. I mean, she could have just said that they weren't her style or what she looks for.
I wonder how many interns passed or will pass on mine?
This business is SOOOO SUBJECTIVE.
The scary thing is, AGENTS need interns. The business is that insane. Agents would NEVER get to ANY queries without them. It still makes me uneasy. The economy sent many editors packing. Publishing houses no longer help groom their writers, they want you ready to go.
So, I shake my head and pray somewhere AN ACTUAL AGENT reads my work and is drawn to it. That a publisher believes in it. And that readers will LOVE it.
BTW, this intern later was on a social media outlet chatting about the queries she was simultaneously reading, liking, passing on, yada. All while continuing to chat on said social media outlet. Chat about queries, shots and drinking games. Yup. How much concentration is going on there? I guess there is so much terrible out there she is forced to drink and read queries.
I shake my head and refuse to let the idea of these interns solely holding the future of my writing career in their hands.
Like I said. I am feeling pretty damn good. Not gonna let this ruin my mood. Plus, DEXTER IS ON!
Need my homicidal fix... BTW that's not an intern in my sofa. Pinky promise. LOL.