Chrysalis: Emerging Women Writers

June 26, 2009

Information for Writers

gadls thesis

gadl's thesis

Hi lady writers,

I’m copying and pasting some important information from Terripatrick.  She put it in a comment that got hung up in a post, and I don’t want you to miss it.

“Here’s two wonderful agents that blog – and they really do love writers.
Jenny Bent: http://www.thebentagency.com/ and here’s a link to her take on conferences: http://www.thebentagency.com/index.php?option=com_wrapper&view=wrapper&Itemid=60

“Kristen Nelson: http://pubrants.blogspot.com/ There’s tons of great information on this blog, she’s been posting for a long time and covers all kinds of publishing business topics.

I agree with Terri.  I like to set aside a few moments to read agent’s blogs. It keens one’s ability to keep up with what agents/publishers are searching for.

And Yes, they are still looking for crisp language with an inciting plot and memorable characters. But with 10-30 seconds to review your submission, your brilliance may be overlooked unless you have some help.

Check this out. Does anyone have other helpful blogs they’d like to add to this share?

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June 11, 2009

Sweating the Details Before You Get to An Agent.

Filed under: Critiques,Technique,Writing — Barb @ 10:26 am
Tags: , , ,

For Anagram Bookshop in Prague (by Kaspen)

For Anagram Bookshop in Prague (by Kaspen)

When I first started presenting my work for critiques, I slapped it on paper any way I could. Through the years, I’ve noticed the better writers seem to take great pains not only in their words, but also in their presentation for informal discussion.

Even for a critique group their documents are  double-spaced, formatted with 1 inch margins, and have appropriate head space above the chapters.  Of course, their headers contain page numbers, but the name of the novel and writer  is also ever present. In other words,  each week’ these writers present a reading in  ready-for-publication style.

When I asked why, they smiled and said it was easier to  do it right in the first place, rather than try to catch every formatting detail later.

Noah Lukeman, a literary agent who has read thousands of manuscripts, gives great advice about details in his slim but weighty book, The First Five Pages. He notes that agents draw conclusion about entire manuscripts from the presentation of the first 1500 words.  Inattention to detail:

“may signal carelessness, sloppiness, ignorance or defiance of the industry’s standards; that the writer doesn’t care enough to do the minimum amount of research to make a manuscript industry presentable. Often when a writer’s presentation is careless, his writing is too.”

Critique groups tend to be informal gatherings. We often print on the backside of used copies, in order to save trees and paper.  However, it’s worth kicking ourselves a couple of times to make sure the formatting on the front side is complete. It will allows our fellow readers to concentrate solely on the words and story line.

Now…if I’ll just follow this advice every week, I’ll get more than the  first 5 pages whipped into shape.

June 3, 2009

YooHoo! There’s a Contest Over Here

by  athena

by athena

Is it worthwhile to enter contests?

Well, the folks that win them sure think it is. Besides, it allows you to stretch your writing muscles and step outside of your comfort zone of reading to your fellow critique members.  Here’s a contest that accepts fiction as well as other genres.

Visions, the literary journal of the NorthWest Arkansas Community College accepts submissions of poetry, short fiction, and digital artwork year-round. The only criterion for publication is excellence.

While there’s no monetary reward, it does build up your writing profile. And it doesn’t cost anything except the postage and ink.

Surely, each of you already have a something in your files to send off.

Good Luck!

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