In the Face of Rejection, I Borrowed from the Bozo the Clown playbook

Monday, September 30, 2019

[Dear Lisa Braxton] …Thank you very much for your submission.  We appreciated very much the quality of your book—in particular, your characters radiate vigor and courage, which gives your work a unique energy.  Unfortunately, we publish a very limited number of books each year and will have to pass on this manuscript… …We received nearly 400 book submissions to our open call, and ultimately we’ll only be able to choose…

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Writing Finances

Friday, April 19, 2019

      I am not a finance person. When I think of the words “financial” and “realities” in the same sentence, my brain tries to make a little symbolic dive under a sofa. All I can do with this post is just lay it out there and be honest. I have no problem telling everyone exactly what my book finances have been so far, because I think it’s important…

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Querying and Authors.Me

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

  First of all, when I was shopping Girlish, I went with the “wallpaper the internet with queries” technique. I queried editors and agents and entered emerging writers’ contests—I tried to put my manuscript in front of as many people as humanly possible. One agent I really liked only took submissions through something called authors.me, so I checked it out. Authors.me is basically a dating service for agents, editors, and…

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Run the World

Note: This week we’re talking about the long and arduous process of how we got our agents. I mean, maybe it’s not arduous for everyone, but damned if I didn’t learn a thing or two about patience along the way.  I like statistics. When I was in the process of looking for representation, it felt like all the stories I heard were people who’d queried a handful of agents and…

Friday, September 29, 2017
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Dear Agent: XOXO from Kimmery

Jane Dystel, Mariam Goderich, Kimmery Martin
Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Note: this week, we are discussing the process of landing a literary agent. For anyone unfamiliar with this torturous process, it involves writing a one-page letter, describing your book and yourself, in which you are supposed to entice, or at least not frighten, the agent. You wanna talk about the sting of rejection? Settle in, child. I am the patron saint of awful query letters. In the beginning, I tried…

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Agents Schmagents

Some people have agents. I am not one of them. It’s not that I don’t like agents, or appreciate their worth, it’s just that I got an offer for Girlish directly from Skyhorse Publishing. You see, I went with the “Wallpaper the Internet with Queries” technique when I was ready to place my book with a publisher. I started on Memorial Day weekend, 2016, and by September, I had an…

Tuesday, September 26, 2017
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How to get an Agent: The Cliffnotes Version

Friday, September 30, 2016

I signed with my awesome agent Natalie in June of 2014. She was the best birthday present I could have ever hoped for! Especially after the six months it took to land her. New Year’s Day, I made the commitment to myself to find an agent for my work in progress novel. It had already been given the thumbs down by several agents and I was feeling defeated. But that year,…

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What Makes a Literary Agent Tick?

Monday, September 26, 2016

This week the Debs are sharing stories about how they found their agent, plus giving advice on querying and the process of landing your own agent. The topic for this week happened to coincide with another column I write, for the GrubStreet writing center’s blog. Last week, I wrote a big long post on how long it took me to find an agent and how I eventually connected with the amazing…

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Last Minute Tips Before You Head to the Writers’ Conference

Monday, March 28, 2016

Tomorrow I am headed to Los Angeles to attend the AWP writers’ conference. I look forward to conferences like AWP and Grub Street’s Muse and the Marketplace every year. What could be more fun? It’s like day camp for writers. Conferences are amazing places where writers can recharge, learn craft, make connections and get inspired. There is a ton of good advice out there about how to prepare for a writers’…

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Advice from My Literary Agent: Surrender Dorothy

Friday, January 22, 2016

For years I pursued a particular agent, who was like the Wizard of Oz to me–a gigantic, intimidating talking head that would decide the fate of my writer’s life. Would I get back to Kansas? Get a heart? A brain? A book deal? Courage? When she turned me down, I was initially devastated. However, a wise friend of mine suggested that maybe it was a blessing. Maybe my writing career…

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