It's been raining all day here today. I love the sound of rain, and I'm always trying to come up with descriptions for it, even when I'm busy cleaning my house.
My eight-year-old son has been building a Droid base with Legos all day. He's really into watching videos created by kids who build Star Wars scenes with Lego bricks, and this is his third base he's created this summer.
As I cleaned in my classroom today, I realized just how soon it's going to be for the 2011-2012 school year! I'm excited, but anxious at the same time. Teachers get anxious, too, especially the night before the first day of school. I always have these weird dreams about my class going out of control. (It's because I'm a control freak - the oldest of three girls - the responsible one). Anyway, I am usually pretty bored on my first day because I have to talk about the rules and procedures. I talk more on my first day of school than I do any other school day, and I talk A LOT!!! It's just that I have to go over so much information at one time. I'm having fun hanging posters and decorating my bulletin boards. This year, I'm going to try to stay organized. We'll see how that goes. I hope my 8th graders from last year will have a great 9th grade year. I will really miss them!
I just signed up today for goodreads. I didn't know about it before. It's a place where you can review books you've read and keep track of those books, books you're reading and books you'd like to read. You can also friend people on there, share with Facebook, Twitter, Blogger and some other places. They have an iPhone app, too. Awesome website.
Check it out.
Also, I'm signed up there as my name - Kathie Harsch. I hope to be putting my books up for review soon - Yay!!!
Book I'm currently reading: Sweep: Book of Shadows Book 1by Cate Tiernan***
Just read: The Body Finder by Kimberly Derting *****
Okay, so I think I've got a good hook for my query, and even for my first page. I've revised nine times, had three different beta readers over the last two years. So, I decided to sign up for Query Tracker, which is a snazzy little program by the way, and it's FREE, and I sent off to three agents. (My goal is one agent a day until my list is exhausted, but so far I'm a little slower than that.)
I already heard back from one. Apparently my first five pages didn't reel her in to want more. So, I revised and started with my second chapter instead. I've always liked that chapter, but one of my beta readers thought I should start with a different chapter, and at the time, it made sense. After reading my first chapter again, I decided it doesn't make sense to start like that anymore.
Now, I'm thinking I need another full on revision before I try to send it off to another agent. A couple of things need to be added or rearranged, and maybe even readded from a previous revision. AHHH!!!
Writers aren't kidding when we say revision is the hardest work. It is. The whole problem with the industry though is that agents are inundated with so many queries and sample chapters that they can't really give any feedback as to why something didn't grab their attention. Right now, the market is tough. Even at the bookstores in the Teen section, I noticed few new writers and mostly the same dark vampire books that have been on the shelves for years. Yet, when I talk to my students they are TIRED of vampires and werewolves. They want something different. Dystopia is hot right now, but unfortunately, my book is not set in a dystopia.
I've been told over and over again by friends, by other authors' websites, by agent websites: DON'T GIVE UP - keep writing and keep sending it out. So, there you have it. I have to keep baiting my hook and casting that reel until I get lucky enough to snag an agent.
Book I'm currently reading: The Passage by Justin Cronin
In order to be a successful writer, you have to set goals for yourself. The only way I was able to write three books in three years was through creating goals for myself and then meeting them over time. It takes consistency and clear vision.
Here are my writing goals this summer that I have to post. This will make me more likely to meet them.
1st: Rewrite my synopsis and update my query letter to find an agent who will represent me for Dreaming Dangerously, Book 1 of the Children of the Psi series.
2nd: Continue working on book two Darkness Descends revision.
3rd: Plot third book in series What Dreams Will Come, so I can start writing pieces of it once I'm finished with book 2.
The great thing is that I already have a marketing plan in several different increments, so that I can also discuss this with an agent/editor.
Finally, Will and Cassie might be out in book form - may the Children of the Psi prevail!!