Pitching a Book: Allergies, colds, and mothering…oh my!

Photo by Unknown

I am an avid believer that in life there are no excuses…except during allergy season in Atlanta, when your fighting a cold and when your a mother — there are no days off in motherhood. So, my goal of pitching to a literary agent each week in March was delayed, until last week.

Check out my Writing vlog on YouTube

That’s right, I pitched to two agents last week. That means I’ve pitched to three agents since Feb. 25 — and I’ve heard back from two already! But I’ll share those details next week.

What I want to touch on this week is what you need to do even before you begin pitching your romance, erotic, fantasy, middle grade, YA or non-fiction (and so on) masterpiece. There are levels to this pitching thang and here is what I’ve learned since I’ve started.

Query Letter

As I shared before in my post Pitching to Literary Agents: See what had happened was…, your query letter not only summarizes your novel or novella, it sells the book. Be sure to include the word count, the genre(s), the audience who would love your book and who you’re book is similar to. That last part has been hard for me because I only like certain erotic stories, and they are mostly the classics.

But, if you can relate your book to a current author or novel, be sure to mention it in your query letter.

Oh and keep this to one page because a lot of agents just want this in an email and they are not going to read anything longer.

Synopsis

This was THE HARDEST piece to pull together for me but in the end, it was worth it because it helped me find those hidden holes in my own story. Again, in the post that I shared earlier, I touched on the importance of this piece.

Yes, no one wants to give away their whole book in 2-5 pages but you must in order to give some agents a full look your storyline.

Remember: this helps them figure out any holes and as I found out, it will help you too.

The FULLL EDITED Manuscript

Originally, I shared that you should have the first three chapters ready. Now I’m changing that to having the full piece completely edited. That means peer groups, hiring an editor, and reviewing it until you want to throw it across the room or are dreaming continuously about every word, every period, hell maybe even the amount of tabs throughout (or is that just me).

This is mandatory because some agents will ask for the first 10 pages or the first three chapters or the first 20 pages or the whole damn thing!! The idea is to be prepared for whatever their request may be. It could be the difference between making the connection now or missing the boat.

We’ll folks, that all I have time for! I’ve back on a normal writing schedule working on book two in this series, and preparing for passion-fy release sooner than later (thank to everyone who voted on instagram)!

dnc-sig

Instagram | Facebook | Twitter | @author_dnc

 

Advertisements

Letting Creativity Flow

Okay passion-fy family, my words have been flowing and my motivation to push my writing and creative desires further are getting stronger and stronger by the second. And let me give a quick shout out to my personal board of directors for giving me life and tell me to quit it with the excuses. So here’s a quick download of my next steps:

Third Book is 97% Completed

I promise y’all, I thought I was finished until I uncovered another chapter in my brain dump of this novella/novel (It’s teetering closer to a novel now) but now I’m wrapping this sucker up. I plan to have this completed by mid-September so I can get it over to an editor (or two) and start pitching it by the end of September. I’m not playing folks. I can’t play anymore because I have at least four more stories dying to get out and I can barely stay focus on this one. But it’s coming I know. A two-year hiatus in publishing isn’t too bad…wait, I was published recently by Z Publishing. If you missed that news, catch up with the previous post.

YouTube Restart and Podcast Launch

I’ve been asked by several writers if I’m going to start back up on the vlogs, and the answer was yes until life happened (baby, moving, motherhood, wifin’, career change, and the list goes on). But I’m for real this time and I’m even going to partner with another fellow YouTuber to start a new channel. Videos are in progress so make sure that you’re following my channel to stay updated on the latest uploads. While you’re there, check out some of the oldies too.

Pushing the Ps: Pitching, pushing, producing

I’ve hit the producing part in the first two sections. But the other two are a bit more complicated for me. For pitching, I’m actively searching for a passionate literary agent. And I don’t someone necessarily into the topics I write about (even though that would be ideal) but someone who is as passionate about their job and role in my career as I am about writing. I’m looking for my Puff Daddy. I want my next piece to get picked up and I know that having someone like that on my team could be a career changer.

Now in regards to pushing, I’ve got to get the word out about my current and previous projects. As a writer, I’m an introvert. I like to do things behind the scene and if someone notices the final project, if not, that’s cool too…but that’s THE WRONG thought process if I want to live off of my books one day. So, to combat my introvertedness (it’s a word, I promise), I’m pushing myself to not only promote my books and passion pieces more on social media and other channels but also send out copies to people who I would love to read my book — no matter how unlikely it is that they get it. Faith always has the final answer.

Stay tuned…

With passion,

DNC

Shop_logo_header_lavender

#Writerslife Proposals, Pitching, Queries…oh my!

This week, I stopped by one of my favorite podcasts, Writing Excuses, and caught this great one on all of the above.

They really tackle some of the old vs. new outlook on pitching, proposals and queries.

Even if you’re not at this place yet, it’s great to keep these thoughts, tips and tricks in your back pocket.

Writingexcuses_proposals

Stay passionate!

-DNC

Drafting Woes: Confusion on Where I’m Going

Forgive me readers. I know some of you are invested in my literary journey and may be wondering why you haven’t heard from me. Why my blog has been slow, or why you haven’t received my month newsletter.

That answer lies in both my unbelievably busy personal life, but also in the tug of war that is continuously happening in my current W.I.P.

On the personal front, my children’s lives are moving so fast, I’m just trying to keep up.

But on the writing front, there are so many ideas and edits that I want to make to the first draft of this new piece (check out the teaser), that I’m all over the place–jumping from chapter to chapter.

I’m starting to realize that my drafting “lifestyle” is mimicking my personal lifestyle; Jumping from one scene to another at lighting speed. Trying to mold character fast to finally get to the end. That has to stop, IMMEDIATELY!

So I’m rearranging my schedule again to get some dedicated hours in a week, at least one day. It will more than likely have to fall on just one day, unlike my daily writing six months ago. But that’s what happens when you’re a passionate writer who is also a passionate life player (mom, wife, sister, friend, colleague, etc.).

Sometimes change is necessary to keep your spirits high and love flowing. My love for writing continues.

So here’s a promise: I’m posting once a week on this here blog (yes a little gangsta talk means I’m serious).  And I’m actually going to start story boarding, which initially I hated thinking about doing since it seems so structured and I’m such a free writing spirit (or at least I try to be) but now I get…I get it guys. Then I’m also going to continue connecting with you wonderful people in dis here writing community.

Matter of fact, I am ecstatic to have the opportunity to join New Roots Living for their October workshop, Publishing Demystified: A Coaching Workshop for Writers. This is a great event for writer’s who not only want an insider’s look on my and another writer’s journey, Eryn Donnalley, but also hands-on coaching about your own literary journey.

NewRoots-DemistryingWriting

See, I understand that sometimes when things seems chaotic, seemingly pushing you into a corner, slowing or even stopping your drive all together, God reminds you that this all included on your journey. It’s not a corner, but just a moment of reflection; like timeout. And not a dead-end, but a left turn.

Stay passionate people!

P.S. Look out for my short story series. Since my drafting process is taking a lot longer than I was hoping (but it’s definitely necessary for this piece), I’m inviting you to indulge in some passion-fy stories along the way. Stay tuned.