Thursday, August 12, 2010

Sorry...and also my query

"Few people think more than two or three times a year; I have made an international reputation for myself by thinking once or twice a week." - George Bernard Shaw

It turns out there were a few things I intended to mention in my last post....but didn't.

Last night I said it was more important to focus on the "Martin" aspect of the character than the "guy" aspect of the character. Get to know him as MARTIN as opposed to A GUY. He has a personality. Let us readers find out what it is.

Also, there are some weird people walking around Food Lion at 9:00 at night. After we dropped Emily and Jessica off at their house, we went to get some milk, and the moment we got back in the car we both voiced the same thought: "There are a lot of weird looking people around Food Lion at night." 
(Actually, it turned out that Mom had gone to the store as well, so now we have 5 gallons of milk.)

I started Part 6 of Ascension last night. Hopefully it will be longer than the rest of them, since they've been getting steadily shorter and shorter. The plot is progressing.

Now to send out those queries.

And here's my query letter, for those who weren't there. It's been edited since last night, so even if you were there, please give any feedback on my changes.

Dear [Agent],

Nearly every civilization has a coming of age rite. In the 51st century, 15 year-olds travel to the dark side of their tidal-locked planet to live without adult influence for a month.

When Terry Massey first arrives, she’s expecting to have a blast, make the friends she’s never had, and start a new life. Her first few hours are great, but then things start to take a turn for the worse. An informal gang of thugs is terrorizing specific people for no apparent reason, her new friend is furious with her, and she’s surrounded by robots who might be trying to take over the world. The only person she identifies with keeps melting away into the shadows, and by trying to find him, she only succeeds in further isolating herself from the rest of her peers within the paradise of an enormous library.

She discovers a hinting of a secret of epic proportions within that library, as well as Colin, the devilishly charming and clever boy who led her there in the first place. As events escalate with the unbelievably irrational behavior of the rest of their age-group— especially the thugs— Terry and Colin join forces with several tea-addicts who sound like computers and an infuriating old man with secrets of his own. Together they must discover the truth behind both the actions of their fellow citizens and the enormous conspiracy that’s been lurking in the Palace’s tower for hundreds of years. And with the thugs after them, they’d better do it fast.

THE CLOCKWORK EXPERIMENT clocks in, if you’ll pardon the pun, at about 83,000 words. I live in Cary, North Carolina, and I’ve been writing for about 8 years; however, this is my first novel.

Thanks for your time and consideration.
                                                   Olivia Wood


  1. I think you might want to change the "clocks in, if you'll pardon the pun" part. I have no problem with it, but I've read that you must be serious and formal with these. I might recommend THE COMPLETE IDIOT'S GUIDE TO GETTING PUBLISHED by Sheree Bykofsky and Jennifer Basye Sander as well as HOW I WRITE by Janet Evanovich (I suppose you don't have to read all of both of them, but I did). I'll send you an Email with CIGGP's query guidelines.

  2. Mm. Maybe. I also read that agents like queries to have voice and personality, yet retain their formality.

  3. I don't know much about writing query letters, so I can't comment on that part...but now I want to read your book! :)

  4. Thanks! It hasn't worked on an agent yet (but that's to be expected), but if it works on readers...that's a good sign!


Talk to me.