Read Books By AWers!

Welcome to the AbsoluteWrite Water Cooler! Please read The Newbie Guide To Absolute Write

editing for authors ad

A publisher or agency using Google ads to solicit your novel probably isn't anyone you want to write for.


Go Back   Absolute Write Water Cooler > General Writing Interest > Novels
Register FAQ Calendar Mark Forums Read

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 02-06-2013, 11:00 PM   #1
korrinblue
New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
 
korrinblue's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Oregon City, Oregon
Posts: 26
korrinblue is on a distinguished road
Where's the happy medium?

At what point do I cease seeking the views of others and stick to what I believe is the best presentation of the story I want to tell?

The piece is urban fantasy, 98,000 words, 414 pages, broken into sixty-four chapters.

I've had two solid beta readers: one loved it and had simply offered technical suggestions to keep the pace; the other keeps asking questions that will be answered in the following pages and is constantly referring to pov issues and how I'm breaking convention between third and omni. The typical friends' and family response is: couldn't put it down - read the last three-hundred pages in one sitting.

15 queries. 8 rejections.
2 requested fulls, one polite rejection within 4 days, one hanging for a month now.
korrinblue is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-06-2013, 11:21 PM   #2
kkbe
Huh.
 
kkbe's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Left of center.
Posts: 4,277
kkbe is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentskkbe is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentskkbe is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentskkbe is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentskkbe is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentskkbe is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentskkbe is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentskkbe is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentskkbe is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentskkbe is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentskkbe is so great that we've run out of appropriate compliments
Quote:
Originally Posted by korrinblue View Post
At what point do I cease seeking the views of others and stick to what I believe is the best presentation of the story I want to tell?

The piece is urban fantasy, 98,000 words, 414 pages, broken into sixty-four chapters.

I've had two solid beta readers: one loved it and had simply offered technical suggestions to keep the pace; the other keeps asking questions that will be answered in the following pages and is constantly referring to pov issues and how I'm breaking convention between third and omni. The typical friends' and family response is: couldn't put it down - read the last three-hundred pages in one sitting.

15 queries. 8 rejections.
2 requested fulls, one polite rejection within 4 days, one hanging for a month now.
I think two fulls from 15 queries is decent. More than. Are you going to send out another batch?

You had two beta-readers with disparate reactions. Don't know what the average is for betas reading one's work. I would guess four or five, then you can get a sense of trend, or lack thereof, but that's just me. How do you feel about it, I guess that's the question. What does your gut tell you about your novel?

I'd send out another batch of QLs, hang tight to see if anything transpires from the two fulls you sent, start working on your next novel in the interim so you don't go stark raving crazy, but that's just me.
__________________
From my WIP:
Quote:
I stared at him and he started smiling.
“You’re fucking with me,” I said. “You are, aren’t you?”
Eric shrugged, still smiling.
“You fuckin’ nut,” I said. “You had me going there for a minute.”
“I know. You shoulda seen your face just now.”
“Asshole,” I said.
“Yep.”
/my little blog/
kkbe is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-06-2013, 11:24 PM   #3
quickWit
Totally Ninja!
 
quickWit's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: I had something for this...
Posts: 13,547
quickWit is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsquickWit is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsquickWit is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsquickWit is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsquickWit is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsquickWit is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsquickWit is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsquickWit is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsquickWit is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsquickWit is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsquickWit is so great that we've run out of appropriate compliments
Are you talking about one MS here, kb? If so, and you've already sent out queries and submitted fulls, I'd say your decision is already made for now. Set it aside, let it breathe and move on to your next story while this one's out trying to win you an agent.
__________________
Grill me a cheese.
quickWit is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-06-2013, 11:28 PM   #4
James D. Macdonald
Your Genial Uncle
Absolute Sage
 
James D. Macdonald's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: New Hampshire
Posts: 23,084
James D. Macdonald is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsJames D. Macdonald is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsJames D. Macdonald is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsJames D. Macdonald is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsJames D. Macdonald is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsJames D. Macdonald is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsJames D. Macdonald is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsJames D. Macdonald is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsJames D. Macdonald is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsJames D. Macdonald is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsJames D. Macdonald is so great that we've run out of appropriate compliments
Where's the happy medium?

In the Landsdawn Rest Home for Retired Spiritualists.

About this story? You've made it the best you can, right? You don't need to follow every suggestion. You took the ones that made sense to you; leave the rest. And write your next novel.
__________________
Madhouse Manor
James D. Macdonald is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-06-2013, 11:37 PM   #5
Jamesaritchie
resident curmudgeon
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 22,935
Jamesaritchie is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsJamesaritchie is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsJamesaritchie is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsJamesaritchie is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsJamesaritchie is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsJamesaritchie is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsJamesaritchie is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsJamesaritchie is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsJamesaritchie is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsJamesaritchie is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsJamesaritchie is so great that we've run out of appropriate compliments
You should never change anything unless you believe the change is for the better, but when someone says you're breaking convention between third limited and omni, you might want to check. It isn't about convention, it's about writing in one or the other. Not doing so can certainly be cause for rejection.
__________________
Blog http://jamesaritchie2.blogspot.com/
Jamesaritchie is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 02-07-2013, 01:05 AM   #6
Wilde_at_heart
Shameless attention-whore...
 
Wilde_at_heart's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Southern Ontario
Posts: 2,701
Wilde_at_heart has a golden reputationWilde_at_heart has a golden reputationWilde_at_heart has a golden reputationWilde_at_heart has a golden reputationWilde_at_heart has a golden reputationWilde_at_heart has a golden reputation
Quote:
Originally Posted by korrinblue View Post
15 queries. 8 rejections.
2 requested fulls, one polite rejection within 4 days, one hanging for a month now.
Maybe your story is fine and it's your query letter that's lacking? I really don't know, being unfamiliar with either, but maybe your QL isn't selling your story as well as it could?

It couldn't hurt to read through Query Letter Hell if you haven't been lurking here that long.

After all, there is only one single explicit rejection of your actual manuscript and it could have been for any number of reasons, not just your story.
__________________
A work of art is the unique result of a unique temperament.

http://twitter.com/wilde_at_heart

WIPs:
Destination Wedding, 84K - Querying
Untitled Urban Fantasy 96K + NA prequel, 119K
Daphne vs the Demoness 89K - polishing
The Human Resources Experiment, 92K, re-thinking halfway through...
Wilde_at_heart is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 02-07-2013, 01:40 AM   #7
Karen Junker
Live a little. Write a lot.
 
Karen Junker's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Bellevue, WA
Posts: 2,182
Karen Junker has a double-platinum reputationKaren Junker has a double-platinum reputationKaren Junker has a double-platinum reputationKaren Junker has a double-platinum reputationKaren Junker has a double-platinum reputationKaren Junker has a double-platinum reputationKaren Junker has a double-platinum reputation
I think your rate of response is good, so stop worrying.

If it makes you feel any better, I have a UF story that I've had around 30 people beta/crit for me and it's about half and half--half ask questions and hate the POV and half love it and want to read more of the story. I had come to the conclusion that I need to screen my critters/betas a bit better to get folks who are familiar with UF and don't need to be spoonfed details immediately.

Good luck with your project!
__________________
Karen Junker
www.CascadeWriters.com
"Spend a passionate weekend with your muse!"
Karen Junker is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-07-2013, 03:03 AM   #8
LJD
practical experience, FTW
 
LJD's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Toronto
Posts: 2,420
LJD leaves trails of profuse coolnessLJD leaves trails of profuse coolnessLJD leaves trails of profuse coolnessLJD leaves trails of profuse coolnessLJD leaves trails of profuse coolness
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wilde_at_heart View Post
Maybe your story is fine and it's your query letter that's lacking? I really don't know, being unfamiliar with either, but maybe your QL isn't selling your story as well as it could?
It's possible. But the OP's response rate isn't bad. 2/15, and still a few that haven't responded.
LJD is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 02-07-2013, 03:25 AM   #9
Buffysquirrel
Possibly not a real squirrel
 
Buffysquirrel's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Coldest corner of the living room, United Kingdom
Posts: 5,501
Buffysquirrel is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsBuffysquirrel is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsBuffysquirrel is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsBuffysquirrel is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsBuffysquirrel is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsBuffysquirrel is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsBuffysquirrel is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsBuffysquirrel is so great that we've run out of appropriate compliments
I suspect revising a ms that's out there is a bad idea. Write something new.
__________________
Writing from a female point of view seems to be generally regarded as something more like writing from the perspective of a deer: you might get points for novelty, but it'd be impossible to get right, and who really wants to hear a deer narrate a story, anyway? Jennifer duBois

Self-sacrifice is vile. Joanna Russ

The Little Dog Laughed
Buffysquirrel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-07-2013, 03:38 AM   #10
BethS
writer, rider, reader...ex-pat!
 
BethS's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: In the land of cheese and chocolate
Posts: 5,952
BethS is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsBethS is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsBethS is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsBethS is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsBethS is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsBethS is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsBethS is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsBethS is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsBethS is so great that we've run out of appropriate compliments
Quote:
Originally Posted by korrinblue View Post

I've had two solid beta readers: one loved it and had simply offered technical suggestions to keep the pace; the other keeps asking questions that will be answered in the following pages and is constantly referring to pov issues and how I'm breaking convention between third and omni.
Maybe get one more opinion (from someone whose opinion you value) and see whether it agrees more with Beta 1 or Beta 2. And meanwhile, stop querying.

Oh, and also get your query letter critiqued, if you haven't already.
__________________
The Stone River
BethS is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-07-2013, 03:54 AM   #11
Stacia Kane
Girl Detective
AW Moderator
 
Stacia Kane's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: In cahoots with the other boo-birds
Posts: 8,114
Stacia Kane is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsStacia Kane is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsStacia Kane is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsStacia Kane is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsStacia Kane is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsStacia Kane is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsStacia Kane is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsStacia Kane is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsStacia Kane is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsStacia Kane is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsStacia Kane is so great that we've run out of appropriate compliments
When you have 50 posts here you can post in Share Your Work.
__________________
http://www.staciakane.com



WRONG WAYS DOWN available now!


"...in Wrong Ways Down, Kane masterfully peels back layers unseen through Chess' point of view. Through Terrible's eyes, Kane walks readers on a thin line, riding the rough and yet poetic cadence of how he speaks and thinks--and in doing so, she reveals a layer to him, Chess and the underbelly of his world not seen before."

--Lauren Dane, NYT & USA TODAY bestseller
Stacia Kane is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-07-2013, 04:24 AM   #12
Geoff Mehl
practical experience, FTW
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 110
Geoff Mehl is on a distinguished road
Quote:
Originally Posted by Buffysquirrel View Post
I suspect revising a ms that's out there is a bad idea. Write something new.
Perfectly said! This seems like a really good time to have confidence in your project, be patient, see how things play out, eventually maybe focus on queries. And the best way to be patient is to start the next project.
Geoff Mehl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-07-2013, 05:53 AM   #13
ChristinaLayton
Banned
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Florida
Posts: 452
ChristinaLayton has a spectacular aura
Quote:
Originally Posted by korrinblue View Post
15 queries. 8 rejections.
2 requested fulls, one polite rejection within 4 days, one hanging for a month now.

I'd be on top of the world if I had even 1 request for a full. That means your query letter got the agents' attention. That's a small, very small sign that you might know where you're going. If I had 20 rejections on the same MS, I'd worry.
ChristinaLayton is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-07-2013, 05:56 AM   #14
ChristinaLayton
Banned
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Florida
Posts: 452
ChristinaLayton has a spectacular aura
Quote:
Originally Posted by James D. Macdonald View Post
Where's the happy medium?

In the Landsdawn Rest Home for Retired Spiritualists.[/B]


You made my entire night, sir. Thank you so much. I'm going to go to sleep happy tonight.
ChristinaLayton is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-07-2013, 06:53 AM   #15
richcapo
Knight Templar
 
richcapo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Fairfax, Virginia
Posts: 922
richcapo has a spectacular aurarichcapo has a spectacular aura
Don't know. All my betas bail on me.
__________________
Richard

It was that bastard man’s voice that woke my father. Papu found himself back in his cell, lying atop a lush bed crafted of various male and female organs and his enemy's passions. Strong with that bastard man’s magic, the organs restrained Papu and sensually rubbed against him. Some xxxxxxx him and some xxxxxx with his xxxxxxx.

Poetry and Jest
richcapo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-07-2013, 07:23 AM   #16
jack lee
figuring it all out
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Perth Australia
Posts: 59
jack lee is on a distinguished road
at least you have tried. i have not go down that road yet. soon I will follow your way.
jack lee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-07-2013, 07:26 AM   #17
A Li Shan
Dr. Sniffles will see you now.
 
A Li Shan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: In the land of Peking Duck
Posts: 154
A Li Shan is on a distinguished road
I remember Stephen King mentioning, in On Writing, that he gives his MS out to five or six beta readers. This way, he can (as another poster said) 'spot the trends' in the feedback. Two beta readers with contradictory advice is kind of the opposite of useful.
__________________
Allison: born in the Year of the Horse, in the Month of the Snake, on the Day of the Horse, in the Hour of the Tiger. That's me.

Non-fiction: A Portrait of the Artist as an Old Man: Jing Hao and his Works

Horror genre: The Valley View Haunting
A Li Shan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-07-2013, 07:41 AM   #18
Birol
Around and About
SuperModerator
 
Birol's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Where I hang my hat... when I can find my hat.
Posts: 14,739
Birol is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsBirol is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsBirol is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsBirol is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsBirol is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsBirol is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsBirol is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsBirol is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsBirol is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsBirol is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsBirol is so great that we've run out of appropriate compliments
Korrin, even when seeking the advice of others, you should always stick to what you believe is the best presentation for the story you want to tell.
__________________
Facebook

Birol is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-07-2013, 05:48 PM   #19
Putputt
boop boop
 
Putputt's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: No longer in Cali :(
Posts: 3,145
Putputt is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsPutputt is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsPutputt is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsPutputt is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsPutputt is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsPutputt is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsPutputt is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsPutputt is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsPutputt is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsPutputt is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsPutputt is so great that we've run out of appropriate compliments
Like others have said, your response rate so far is decent...but I'd send it out to more betas (not family unless you know that person is willing to be ruthless with your work when they need to be) just so you can get a feel for how the majority of readers feel about the book.

Other than that, the best advice I received after going on sub is to move on to your next book. It'll help get your mind off your current MS...something I found really useful. Helped keep my sanity.
__________________
me: But I need to kill this character! I love her death. SHE NEEDS TO DIE.
AWer: YOU THINK THIS OF ALL YOUR CHARACTERS. STOP. KILLING. THEM.

Twitter

Repped by SLA
Putputt is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-07-2013, 06:27 PM   #20
etcetc
figuring it all out
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Oxford, UK
Posts: 69
etcetc is on a distinguished road
Quote:
Originally Posted by A Li Shan View Post
I remember Stephen King mentioning, in On Writing, that he gives his MS out to five or six beta readers. This way, he can (as another poster said) 'spot the trends' in the feedback. Two beta readers with contradictory advice is kind of the opposite of useful.
This. You need to see where others come down on the issue, and preferably not friends/family.
Having said that, it sounds as though you've had enough and like it as is - and two full requests isn't discouraging. Maybe just keep querying away!.
etcetc is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-07-2013, 10:00 PM   #21
korrinblue
New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
 
korrinblue's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Oregon City, Oregon
Posts: 26
korrinblue is on a distinguished road
Quote:
Originally Posted by James D. Macdonald View Post
Where's the happy medium?

In the Landsdawn Rest Home for Retired Spiritualists.

About this story? You've made it the best you can, right? You don't need to follow every suggestion. You took the ones that made sense to you; leave the rest. And write your next novel.
Okay, gotta be quicker to laugh at myself. First off, thanks everybody for your replies. I realized I was whining after reading Mr. Macdonald's views on the matter. Secondly, I really don't know how this industry works. The two requested fulls came from face-to-face pitches at the Willamette Writer's conference. After the rejection of the first full came back with the note she thought it was a promising project, but it needed some more work editorially, well, I began to wonder if I was a better bullshit artist than writer. Needless to say, I cooked up a somewhat risky (possibly, I have no idea) query letter and started seeking validation elsewhere. Wouldn't recommend that, by the way. So I will follow the advice here and take my query letter over to Query Letter Hell and discover if I have what it takes to keep at this for the long haul. Thanks again.

In the meanwhile, I'm assuming I should wait on any further serious queries until hearing back from the second requested full?
korrinblue is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-07-2013, 10:11 PM   #22
korrinblue
New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
 
korrinblue's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Oregon City, Oregon
Posts: 26
korrinblue is on a distinguished road
Uhm, does the 50 post rule apply to this query letter hell?
korrinblue is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-07-2013, 11:21 PM   #23
Karen Junker
Live a little. Write a lot.
 
Karen Junker's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Bellevue, WA
Posts: 2,182
Karen Junker has a double-platinum reputationKaren Junker has a double-platinum reputationKaren Junker has a double-platinum reputationKaren Junker has a double-platinum reputationKaren Junker has a double-platinum reputationKaren Junker has a double-platinum reputationKaren Junker has a double-platinum reputation
Quote:
Originally Posted by korrinblue View Post
Uhm, does the 50 post rule apply to this query letter hell?
Yes. But you can still critique the queries of other people and other submissions in the Share Your Work section. Once you have 50 posts, you'll be able to post yours. Good luck!
__________________
Karen Junker
www.CascadeWriters.com
"Spend a passionate weekend with your muse!"
Karen Junker is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-08-2013, 12:52 AM   #24
Wilde_at_heart
Shameless attention-whore...
 
Wilde_at_heart's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Southern Ontario
Posts: 2,701
Wilde_at_heart has a golden reputationWilde_at_heart has a golden reputationWilde_at_heart has a golden reputationWilde_at_heart has a golden reputationWilde_at_heart has a golden reputationWilde_at_heart has a golden reputation
Quote:
Originally Posted by LJD View Post
It's possible. But the OP's response rate isn't bad. 2/15, and still a few that haven't responded.
Thanks. I have no idea what a good or bad response rate is even if both the QL and novel are truly stellar.
__________________
A work of art is the unique result of a unique temperament.

http://twitter.com/wilde_at_heart

WIPs:
Destination Wedding, 84K - Querying
Untitled Urban Fantasy 96K + NA prequel, 119K
Daphne vs the Demoness 89K - polishing
The Human Resources Experiment, 92K, re-thinking halfway through...
Wilde_at_heart is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 02-08-2013, 01:11 AM   #25
korrinblue
New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
 
korrinblue's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Oregon City, Oregon
Posts: 26
korrinblue is on a distinguished road
Quote:
Originally Posted by Birol View Post
Korrin, even when seeking the advice of others, you should always stick to what you believe is the best presentation for the story you want to tell.
Thanks. Nobody makes me crazier than I do.
korrinblue is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

Custom Search

If this site is helpful to you,
Please consider a voluntary subscription to defray ongoing expenses.

Buy Scrivener 2 for Mac OS X (Regular Licence)


All times are GMT +4.5. The time now is 08:56 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.5
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.