letters from the query wars

# of queries read this week: 137
# of partials/manuscripts requested: 0

Note to self: Do not put “read e-queries” on your list for the day because you will never get to cross it off as they inevitably continue arriving while you attempt to put a dent in them. Put “read 30 e-queries” (or if you’re feeling ambitious, 50). Then, you’ll be able to cross it off and any extra will be gravy. This will greatly improve your psychological outlook when considering these letters. Perhaps you will at least find it less Sisyphean.

Also, what is this fascination with beginning novels with birthing scenes?

Ever notice how funny some people’s email addresses are?

13 responses to “letters from the query wars

  1. Also, what is this fascination with beginning novels with birthing scenes?
    A metaphor for the writer’s creative process?

  2. Hee. I totally used to begin many of my fantasies with birthing scenes, but in my defense I was in high school, and hadn’t read that widely in fantasy yet, and several of the ones I HAD read used them so I figured it was sort of the “done” thing. I have since learned better. =)

  3. Good list device. Keep your sanity intact!
    And, having the email addy Hogglebog, I have NO idea what you are talking about. =D

  4. I’ve heard from human resources where I work that looking at email addresses is an easy way to eliminate applicants from the interview pool. “hotbabydaddy@yahoo.com” is less likely to get an interview than “lastname.firstname@gmail.com.” Go figure.

  5. Indeed, goals ought to be Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Timebound.
    Oh no! I can’t believe I wrote that. (Consider it just a kind of MBA Tourettes; I have no control.)
    Anyway, clearing out your e-queries box is rather like a Sisyphus goal, and we all know how badly that turned out for him.

  6. birthing scenes
    What kind of bribe do you want to keep rejecting birthing scenes? I promise, if that’s what a book opens with I won’t read it. I’ve had two children through natural means, it isn’t entertaining, it isn’t alluring, and it is not something I want to curl up and read on a stormy day.

  7. I created a “business” email addy for just that reason! We had a woman apply for a position at my job with an email addy of hotwench@something.com! Although her resume was riddled with flaws, so she probably wouldn’t have gotten the job anyway…that email addy did not help her case.
    And um…haven’t read any opening birthing scenes, but plenty of unrealistic ones. This from a woman who has NO children to say what is or isn’t realistic, but in my defense, I work for 2 Perinatologist and have seen enough births to last a life time.

  8. Hahaha – as a pro artist with a large web presence, I’ve figured out the secret to meeting the goal “read and respond to all my e-mails” works the best if you set out on this goal at the dark hours of the morning, when most e-mailers are not yet crawled from their beds.
    Otherwise, yes, the inbox is a gift that keeps on giving.

  9. Birthing scenes?
    Yeow. I’ve delivered about a dozen kids and while the end result may qualify as “the miracle of birth” the actual act is all sorts of gooey biology.

  10. I have two e-mails now, since the older one has now become to overcome with junk mail I have given up hopes of cleaning it out in any realistic time frame.
    As far as birthing scenes, I don’t think a messy description would be all that entertaining. A humorous one, yes, such as when the wife grabs the man in a private place on accident on the way in to the hospital (yes, this does happen, as my husband can attest, and it was an accident). As well as incompetent nurses doing foolish things. But these are only amusing if all is well in the end and not accompanied by grossness. *ick*

  11. Also, what is this fascination with beginning novels with birthing scenes?
    We had this conversation in my writing group about a year ago, when 3 of the 7 authors being critiqued at the time thought it was important to start at the very beginning.
    I think that the author is doing background work that they don’t know they’re doing, and then, when they’ve written for about 5 more years, they discover that birth is one more thing that editors/publishers/readers don’t need to see, but they do.
    Catherine

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