Tag: history

The Ubiquitous #Query Letter @badlitagent

The Ubiquitous #Query Letter @badlitagent

(The following is a satirical expression of frustration with the egocentric gatekeepers of the publishing world.)

I am not picking on you @badlitagent, I like your snark.

There are many out there who claim to “know the secret” of how to write the “perfect” query letter.

 

If you just follow, their simple steps, agents, and publishers alike will seek your manuscript!

 

“Who believes that?”

 

I am a writer, I write!  When I am writing, I am lost in the story.  The characters take on lives of their own and demand that I faithfully capture their personalities and character traits, as well as their actions.  The story must be cohesive, that is where I live.

When you find yourself spending more time researching each agent, constructing a query letter, creating a synopsis per their idea of what that is, and first few pages in whatever format that desire, something is wrong.

The actual hell of it is, you are not, repeat not, trying to catch the agent’s attention.  They are too wrapped up in their position of power, to bother to read your query letter, much less respond to them.  No, they have interns that may be going to college or maybe in high school.  Hell, they might have their twelve-year-olds reading them.

 

(Looking for interns)

“If you like to read certain books that we represent, we will hire you as an intern.  You must be able to “read” several query letters, and write a report on each in one sentence or less.” 

 

When researching the agent, this is typical.

“If we don’t respond in eight weeks, consider it a pass.”

 

How fucking lousy is that!  You spend hours crafting the perfect Query letter, and the agent does not have time to respond with a  simple form reply..!?

 

“I want some fucking feedback!  Why? What about this letter, or this manuscript, turned you off on the project. What was missing?  What one thing if it had would make you excited?”

 

Some will send you the form letter “Your story is not the kind of material we represent.”  Please please please continue to bang your head against the wall though; we like to hear the banging, as it keeps us awake!
(It is what you represent, because I researched your damned site, and your bio, and who you have published thus far, so either you did not read it, or your intern cannot read!)

 

Here is what I think they mean to say. Allow me to translate this for you.

 

“If you have a proven track record of selling millions of books, we might consider looking at your manuscript.  If you were on the New York Times bestseller list, let us know that too, so we can ask the intern to read more than the title of what you send.  We only have time to spend on sure bets. If you are not a famous author, please, do not bother us! I know we say that we are looking for first time authors but we all say that, don’t we?  Whatever you have written, it is trash unless we can sell at least a million copies of it, without investing any money or time on it what so ever.  As the matter of fact; if you can sell a million copies on your own, just send us 30% and we might be persuaded to have the senior intern look at your next project.” 

 

“If you still want to send us a query letter, use one syllable words so our interns who are either stoned or still in pre-K can understand them.  Thanks for your understanding now, go fuck off! And, have a nice day!”  

 

My advice…

 

You cannot be a one trick pony.

 

You must have more than one novel in you.  Get published in as many places as you can.  Whether that be newsletters, magazines, short stories and unfortunately self-publish something.  Consider it a giveaway because there is little to no protection for intellectual property rights once you put it on the Internet.  There are programs out there that can take Kindle or other types of e-books and turn them into PDF’s so they can be “shared.”

 

Many write short stories and give them away just to get their “brand” out there.

 

Truthfully we have no idea what the intern is looking for; it could be word count, Genre, style of writing or eloquent phrases or pixie dust.   Since their website does not give us any information on where they went to school or what they like to read, it is a crap shoot!

 

The bottom line as I see it, you must “be someone” already, to get their attention.

 

Your thoughts are always interesting to me, feel free to elucidate on your experiences.

 

Maybe you have an agent that reads his or her own query letters?  Tell us about that.

 

Remember that most of this is satire, with some frustration mixed in.

 

-Best

 

© All rights Reserved 2016

 

 

Trust Me

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It never ceases to amaze me how people will blindly trust “in this case” the government.

 

People continue to surrender their rights to privacy in exchange for safety.  How safe are you? 

Here is an article I found most disturbing.  http://www.nytimes.com/2009/05/14/us/14explorers.html?_r=1&

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 These are kids playing soldier.   Does this not look eerily reminiscent of this? 

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The government has deals with cell phone providers to get anything that they want detailing your account and activity.  My guess would be that they can also tell what you watch on TV and where you have been on the Internet, all without a warrant.

 Bush opened this can of worms and Obama is just capitalizing on it.  Do you know that once you surrender your rights that you will never get them back?  Again, looking at history; it will take a war with our young men and women fighting each other to bring about some sort of government that is not so “corrupt” if we don’t start now.  It will be that or the word “free” will have a whole new meaning.  With each new law you loose some freedoms.  

We learn that they have supercomputers which break your passwords and security algorithms (most probably using brute force) and that too is done without oversight from a governing body.

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In months to come your complete medical history will be available online.  That includes notes about your confidential conversations with your mental health provider.   If you are prescribed any type of medicine for anything, big brother will know about it and most likely profile you in some sort of slot.

It would seem to me that they should tie this profile to a unique number.  There would be no names in it that could identify the person to whom the medical  information belonged.  Until you provide them a number either by telling it to them or producing a card with it on it would they have access to it.  I realize that it will take hundreds of thinkers in several states and committee meeting after committee meeting to think the process through and come up with this idea but, you can have it for free; and save the tax payers billions while you try to come up with it.  Oh, and use a hexadecimal numbering scheme so you have lots of numbers.

We have many companies out there providing backup services to companies and individuals via “The Cloud.”  Now how much would you care to wager that the same cloud that houses your encrypted data also provides a shadow over a less than honorable sector of our government?  “all in the name of safety of course.”

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Their reasons for originally doing this may seem honorable but with absolute power comes absolute corruption.  If you doubt this, try reading some history.  It happens to be rife with such events although the internet was not invented then..

 

We in fact are following cyclical history and we don’t ever seem to learn from it.

Like the frog in the boiling water, we just never saw it coming…

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-Best to you and those that you care about!