Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Topic Suggestions and Wayward E-Mails

This whole concept of wayward emails is starting to plague my thoughts. Today, we determined that Pocket Books wasn't getting Nephele's emails because of their heavy duty spam filter. I heard from an editor at Berkley that she never received an e-submission of mine (probably something similar.) I followed up with a business contact after not receiving a reply--only to discover that they'd accidentally sent it to the wrong person (not me.) All this unreliability is making me nuts. And when you couple it with some of the issues we experienced with a few authors not receiving our replies (details were posted here. Note Theresa's earlier post, for instance), I can't help but wonder if our society is becoming dependent upon an utterly unreliable form of communication.

All of this is simply to reiterate--yet again--if you have a query to any editor or agent, or a submission, and are perplexed by a lack of reply, then KEEP following up until you receive an answer. I've said it before and I am saying it yet again because of how many occasions I had to consider this global issue today. Enough said.

Now, another thought I've been considering, which is what topics would you visitors like to see addressed on this site? I'm obviously kind of alternating between newsy agency posts and informative writer community posts, and clearly this venue is a bit organic. Any suggestions of something that would help you as an aspiring writer or reader of this blog? I'm open to hearing them as we contemplate future blog topics.

Thanks!! Deidre

11 Comments:

Anonymous Jessica Madden said...

I guess what I'd like to see is WHERE most submissions go wrong.

Is it the query? The synopsis? Are those minor details we're spending too much time harping on? Or is it the writing itself and only the writing? Can you tell right away if someone's got an 'ear' for story or is it a bit harder to feel out?

Is that only one question? *g*

I guess I'd like to know how YOU as the agent, view the average submission package (since I am an aspiring author).

Tuesday, June 7, 2005 at 10:53:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The email situation is so frustrating. The last thing an aspiring novelist wants to be is a pest!

How about this for a topic: Advances. I know the range is huge, but what can a writer expect from a first novel? (How's that for optimism?)Does the typical novel continue to generate royalties over the course of several years?

Wednesday, June 8, 2005 at 9:15:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

anonymous revealed ... Shelley Tougas (oops, didn't mean to be so secret!)

Wednesday, June 8, 2005 at 9:16:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I asked another agent this recently at a conference and I'd be intertested in your response. If you have a submission that the idea interests you and you think the writing is "almost there," but but needs some tweaks, would you possibly take on that write and work with him or her to make it even better for submission?

Lucy Stokes

Wednesday, June 8, 2005 at 11:43:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous Jenny Turner said...

I'm ever curious about what an agent thinks of the submissions they recieve! I'm not talking addressing specific manuscripts--but the sort of repeated issues you see--say during a week or two of reading.

Topics might be:

Queries/Synopses/Partials: What I hate/love to recieve.

What you're seeing too much of, and why it irks you--not necessarily trends in genres, but styles, voices, etc. Such as a "theraputic discourse of all the traumas in my life written in the style of Bridget Jones but with a vampire tossed in to appeal to paranormal readers" type of books.

What you're not seeing enough of--again, not so much as in genre trends, but in the way of the actual writing. What works for you, what doesn't.

I hope this illustrates the sort of direction I'm suggesting,and not doing such a hot job of explaining!

Warmly,
Jenny:)

Thursday, June 9, 2005 at 12:25:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Sarah McCarty said...

Because I'm insatiably curious about everything, I'd like to see a day in the life thing. Nothing fancy. Just the highlights. as they would appear in a daytimer. Hmm, maybe for a few days to get a feel for what an agents routine is like.

(And none of you saw me here, ok?)

Sarah, slipping back into the editing cave

Thursday, June 9, 2005 at 1:58:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Deidre Knight said...

I love the DAY IN THE LIFE idea! Great topic. OTher great ideas here as well. More to come SOON.

Thursday, June 9, 2005 at 10:01:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Sydney said...

I'd like to hear about conference etiquette regarding agent and editor contact. When is it appropriate to approach and a/e and where are the limits? Maybe the signs that an a/E is politely trying to tell you to get lost. Stuff like that.

And I'd like to know what you expect from an author in a group pitch situation. How does it differ from a one-on-one pitch appointment? Or from a quick pitch at the bar?

Since Reno is coming up, I'd like to be prepared to act appropriately, but still get the most out of the networking possibilities available.

Thanks!
Sydney

Tuesday, June 14, 2005 at 5:01:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous Pam Leany said...

I’d love a discussion of genre because my writing is difficult to pigeonhole. Life is funny and sad and romance strikes while people are busy with their daily adventures.

Thanks for the blog. It’s a nice break from trying to string words into coherent sentences.

Friday, June 17, 2005 at 11:51:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous Lynne Connolly said...

Interesting to read about what people want and want to see. What I'd like to know is why do people write? Even when you're established the money isn't stellar (unless you're one of the handful of stars on the writing scene). So what makes you want to write for publication? I wrote for fun for a very long time, but I still took it seriously. I sent my first book off on a whim, and a publisher took it. Now I'm backed up into next year with books! How did that happen?
And why doesn't romance sell outside the North American continent? That's a question in itself, and since I'm a guest blogger over at blogsforauthors.com I might address it over there!
Funny old world, ain't it?

Tuesday, June 21, 2005 at 7:00:00 AM EDT  
Blogger Deidre Knight said...

Lucy Stokes, you're the winner. You will be my next blog entry! Possibly tonight...possibly not. :) Let's see how my work load goes this evening.

Tuesday, June 21, 2005 at 10:51:00 PM EDT  

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