Monday, February 20, 2012

Something New

Status: I've started my planning, plotting, and scheming for my next book, and I'm crazy excited about it. Could be a while before I get to the point where I'm actually ready to start writing, though. I like to really get a firm grasp on the world, characters, plot, etc. before I take a stab at chapters. Otherwise my book will end up being a long, rambling, disconnected mess. And trust me when I say I know what I'm talking about.

Number of agents queried: 12
Number of form rejections: 4
Number of requests for additional materials: 0

The good news is I've started sleeping again. Not necessarily well, but well enough to stop looking like a zombie when I get to work in the morning. Okay, maybe I didn't really look like a zombie. If for no other reason than that I wasn't all gross from eating people. But still.

The reason for this improvement? It might be that the novelty of the whole thing has worn off. I have a bunch of queries in the field now. I've already gotten some rejections under my belt. And, as I mentioned above, I started working on my newest project. All those things sort of work together to take the pressure off.

All that said, I haven't really been on a normal sleeping schedule. I took a break from reading for nearly a month so that I wouldn't be distracted from finishing my book and getting it ready to submit. But this weekend, I decided it was time to get back in the swing of things. First, I read Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins. For anyone not familiar with the series, this is the third in the Hunger Games trilogy. I hadn't let myself start reading it until my book was finished, because I knew, from the way the first two books absolutely consumed my life until I finished them, that it would be far too much of a distraction. It was definitely my least favorite of all the books. There was one part that actually made me incredibly angry. I still can't believe the author decided to do that. Not a choice I would've made in a million years. But maybe that's what she was going for. Glad that I finished reading it, though, even if it was my least favorite of the three. Still a good book, and now I don't have to wonder what happens.

Then I read a book called Firelight by Kristen Callihan (only $5.99 on my Nook!). This book is basically a Victorian Gothic paranormal romance retelling of Beauty and the Beast (quite a mouthful, huh?). With the exception of the last part (I have a great love for fairy tale retellings, and especially ones based on Beauty and the Beast or Cinderella), this isn't something I'd normally read. But there was a wonderful
blog post by Kristen Callihan's agent, Kristin Nelson, that convinced me to give it a shot. And I can say unequivocally that I'm glad I did.

But with all these good books to read, I've been staying up way past my bedtime. I need to get back on a regular schedule so I can stop being so groggy. I've been in something of a fog all morning. I finally gave in and got some caffeine into my system. Which is something my doctor has told me time and again I should not do, because too much caffeine gives me headaches, and I used to drink something like 15 Diet Cokes a day. Relying on caffeine to wake myself up is a slippery slope I shouldn't go anywhere near again. But what can you do? I've got stuff to do today, and I won't get any of it done if I'm just lazing about, my thoughts muddled and my body unwilling to move.

So after this blog post, I want to work more on my new book. I'm returning to traditional fantasy, which is something I haven't done for a number of years. Although my last book involved plenty of traditional fantasy elements, the MC was a girl from Connecticut, so it certainly can't be classified as just a traditional fantasy. But for my new book, I'm creating a whole new world, a whole new culture, a whole new magical lore. So much fun. And when I need a break, maybe I'll query a few more agents. I had to remove one from my list because I found out she's not accepting queries right now, but that still leaves 21.

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