Posts tagged Literary Agents
Working on a Manuscript? How to Crank out a Complete Draft

Here's a made up statistic for you: 99.9% of published authors had to work around full-time jobs to write their first book. In other words, it is well within your grasp to finish a manuscript, even if you already feel your time is fully consumed. All it takes is dedication and a realistic set of goals. 

So for all you lovely readers with Word documents on your laptops filed under "To Be Continued, Never," I have put together a very simple program to get your manuscript from secret status to query-time status.

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First Pages: Will Agents Like How My Novel Starts?

So far, my biggest hurdle in writing a novel has been the first few pages. 

There is an insane amount of pressure to make the first pages of your manuscript mind-blowing, and more than a few "guidelines" have been provided by literary agents and publishers alike. The problem is, these guidelines aren't exactly a recipe for a brilliant book so much as they are ways to cut back on the number of pages a member of the publishing industry has to read before he feels justified in shooting the manuscript down. 

Here are some classic rules for the first ten pages of a novel that I have come across in my research:

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The Most Frightening Writing Term I Know: "High Concept"

The title of the webinar was "Writing and Selling Young Adult Fiction." Sounds pretty perfect, am I write (heh)? It was hosted by a literary agent, and the fee included a critique of my first 750 words.

Let me tell you my overall feeling once I was finished with this webinar: utter hopelessness. You want to know why? Two scary words: HIGH CONCEPT.

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