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nerds
12-12-2007, 08:06 PM
what is the best way to say that within a query without sounding like a total schmuck? I've gathered that it should be mentioned. Is it acceptable to just say, "This is my first book/novel/project/whatever" and leave it at that? Any input on this will be very much appreciated, thx.

seun
12-12-2007, 08:23 PM
I don't mention it outright. I figure unless I mention a specific publishing credit, it's pretty clear I'm unpublished. So I give them info on the book I'm submitting and threaten their children unless they publish it...I mean, thank them for their time. :D

AllyWoof
12-12-2007, 08:23 PM
I am just afraid to send out my story. How do I overcome that?

seun
12-12-2007, 08:25 PM
I am just afraid to send out my story. How do I overcome that?

Simple. Get it as good as you can (rewrite again and again and again) and submit. If there's a magic answer, I'd love to know what it is.

stormie
12-12-2007, 08:29 PM
nerdsRus:Just don't say anything if you don't have writing credits pertaining to what you're submitting.

Allywoof, it's hard, I know, with that first submission. Your hand shakes as you either hit the "send" button or push the envelope through the mail slot. Then you feel the need to pace or lie down.
Take a deep breath and just send that thing in.

AllyWoof
12-12-2007, 08:29 PM
Simple. Get it as good as you can (rewrite again and again and again) and submit. If there's a magic answer, I'd love to know what it is. lol

nerds
12-12-2007, 08:39 PM
o.k., I like the say-nothing plan. I guess that's one bit of awful I can eliminate from the overall awfulness of querying. Kewl, and thanks for the help.

drachin8
12-12-2007, 08:39 PM
what is the best way to say that within a query without sounding like a total schmuck? I've gathered that it should be mentioned. Is it acceptable to just say, "This is my first book/novel/project/whatever" and leave it at that? Any input on this will be very much appreciated, thx.

I believe the standard is pretty much to just not mention it and everyone will assume you have no publishing credits.

Good luck with the submission process!


:)

-Michelle

AllyWoof
12-12-2007, 08:47 PM
nerdsRus:Allywoof, it's hard, I know, with that first submission. Your hand shakes as you either hit the "send" button or push the envelope through the mail slot. Then you feel the need to pace or lie down.
Take a deep breath and just send that thing in.

I've been published before. That is what makes this whole thing so .......I can't even come up with the word for it.

drachin8
12-12-2007, 08:50 PM
I am just afraid to send out my story. How do I overcome that?

The worst that can happen is rejection. And you know what, the only thing rejection means is the story was not quite right for that particular editor. It doesn't say anything about you, your personal hygiene, or your choice in friends, and it doesn't tell you to quit writing and never submit again. The only thing that tells you that is Fear of Rejection, and right now you are letting that fear rule you. Rejection is just a piece of paper or a short email that stings for a few seconds then passes on. Fear is a life-controlling disease that keeps you from becoming the best you can be.

Which do you prefer?

I know my choice...


:)

-Michelle

Monkey
12-12-2007, 08:55 PM
AllyWoof,

Don't sweat it. What's the worst that can happen? A snotty rejection letter? Fine. Keep that thing. Wear that rejection like a badge of honor, proof that you're a "real" writer. Then submit your work again. And again. Polish it if all the rejections are snarky, and submit it again.

At least that way, there's a chance that it'll get accepted. Until you send it out, there's no chance at all.

Best of luck!

ETA: Drachin8's post didn't show up for me until after I had posted. But I agree with her!

AllyWoof
12-12-2007, 08:58 PM
The worst that can happen is rejection. And you know what, the only thing rejection means is the story was not quite right for that particular editor. It doesn't say anything about you, your personal hygiene, or your choice in friends, and it doesn't tell you to quit writing and never submit again. The only thing that tells you that is Fear of Rejection, and right now you are letting that fear rule you. Rejection is just a piece of paper or a short email that stings for a few seconds then passes on. Fear is a life-controlling disease that keeps you from becoming the best you can be.

Which do you prefer?

I know my choice...


:)

-Michelle I know this is stupid, but rejection of a piece of my writing makes me believe those people are rejecting me as a human. Geez! Even after typing this, I know i t is "bluediculous".

triceretops
12-12-2007, 08:59 PM
You don't even have to mention this at all.

Tri

seun
12-12-2007, 08:59 PM
I know this is stupid, but rejection of a piece of my writing makes me believe those people are rejecting me as a human. Geez! Even after typing this, I know i t is "bluediculous".

You need to lose that idea immediately because it's total bollocks. Plus it will get you nowhere in this lark.

drachin8
12-12-2007, 09:42 PM
I know this is stupid, but rejection of a piece of my writing makes me believe those people are rejecting me as a human. Geez! Even after typing this, I know i t is "bluediculous".

Maybe something to help you get past this is to do some critiquing in the SYW forum. As a critiquer, you are somewhat mimicking the same process an editor goes through when reading slush. Read the pieces (the good, the bad, the ugly), formulate your thoughts on why you would or would not print them in "your" magazine. Then think on the pieces you have read and how they make you feel about the authors who took the courage to post them (aka "submit"). Do you think less of the people you have "rejected"? Are you rejecting them personally or just the story? Think about it and start working on reengineering your thinking on this because most likely the editor doesn't know a thing about you personally and thus cannot actually reject you. All they can see is a story and whether or not it is right for their publication. It has nothing to do with you.

All of your writing will likely contain bits and pieces of you, but those bits and pieces are not actually yourself, just pale reflections of the complexity and depth that make you who you are.

All an editor will reject is your words. Your fear is what is rejecting yourself.

If after the above you truly feel that you are unable to take that plunge, then I suggest you find a friend who can manage the process for you (I know of at least one co-author team who I think does this). When you are finished with a story, give it over to them and let them take care of everything submission related. All they will do is tell you when you are accepted.

I honestly hope you are able to find that separation between your work and yourself, though, as it makes the writing process so much easier.


*hugs*

-Michelle

AllyWoof
12-12-2007, 10:18 PM
I honestly hope you are able to find that separation between your work and yourself, though, as it makes the writing process so much easier.
And I won't charge myself an arm and a leg. lol

Monkey
12-12-2007, 11:43 PM
AllyWoof:


Maybe something to help you get past this is to do some critiquing in the SYW forum.

May I humbly offer my own work? Just click on the line in my signature.
:D

maestrowork
12-13-2007, 12:20 AM
If you have no credits at all, just skip it. No need to say anything.

ishtar'sgate
12-13-2007, 12:45 AM
what is the best way to say that within a query without sounding like a total schmuck? I've gathered that it should be mentioned. Is it acceptable to just say, "This is my first book/novel/project/whatever" and leave it at that? Any input on this will be very much appreciated, thx.
All I said was that it was my debut novel. Worked just fine.
Linnea

maestrowork
12-13-2007, 12:56 AM
In a query? There's no need to say it's your first novel. Let the book shine on its own. Skip most irrelevant information.

Maryn
12-13-2007, 02:37 AM
Skip most irrelevant information.Which irrelevant information should I include in my query? I was thinking glove size, to show I'm refined and ladylike.

Maryn, genteel as all hell

maestrowork
12-13-2007, 02:40 AM
Shoe size. Because, you know, there really is no correlation.

badducky
12-13-2007, 02:42 AM
I'd totally reject Drachin8 because of her friends.

Anyone who is friends with that J M McDermott jerk is clearly nothing but trouble.

You, too, Maestrowork! All of you! I reject you!

drachin8
12-13-2007, 03:52 AM
I would reject badducky because I hear he is quackers and his stories are too fowl.


:)

-Michelle

blacbird
12-13-2007, 08:21 AM
Allywoof, it's hard, I know, with that first submission.

And it doesn't get any easier with any subsequent submission.

caw

badducky
12-13-2007, 08:40 AM
Bear in mind that many, many slush readers and editors read the query letter last, to prevent from biased reading of the text.

Some don't, sure. Some read the query letter first and treat it like a job interview. Not everyone does. Even them that treat queries like a job interview turn the page if there are no glaring typos or warning signs of crazy.

Relax. Revise. Rework. Submit.

Imagine what would have happened if Khaled Hosseini's wife hadn't pushed his manuscript out the door with all her might...

seun
12-13-2007, 03:27 PM
Shoe size. Because, you know, there really is no correlation.

I'm a UK size 13. How big should my penis be?

Maryn
12-13-2007, 06:23 PM
Bigger.

That's obvious, to those who keep their reading glasses handy, anyway.

Maryn, whose trotters are a dainty 9.5

stormie
12-13-2007, 07:26 PM
And it doesn't get any easier with any subsequent submission.

caw
Yes, but I just didn't want to scare anyone. People ask me why my fingernails look so...so...bitten. It's seven years of writing and querying and waiting and....

Anyway, take a deep breath, hit "send," then go get a drink. Of water. (I prefer mine with schnapps and some ice. :D)

ACEnders
12-14-2007, 09:35 PM
AllyWoof,

Don't sweat it. What's the worst that can happen? A snotty rejection letter? Fine. Keep that thing. Wear that rejection like a badge of honor, proof that you're a "real" writer. Then submit your work again. And again. Polish it if all the rejections are snarky, and submit it again.

At least that way, there's a chance that it'll get accepted. Until you send it out, there's no chance at all.

Best of luck!



Thanks Monkey! I think that is so well put...and in a few days when I begin querying, I will take it to heart!