Hello, dreamers. It’s been a while, so I’ll get right to it.
For the past few months, I’ve been largely silent. The odd post here and there, but for the most part, I’ve allowed life to get in the way. Between my job and my relationships, it hasn’t been very easy keeping to a writing regimen. It’s something I’ve been very self-conscious about, which is part of the reason I stopped posting altogether, stopped going on Twitter. All of that was a mistake, and it took me longer to realize that than it should have.
I often find ambitious goals to be a powerful motivator, and thus I return to my platform with new goals, new benchmarks, and renewed vigor. For now, the plan is this: Over the coming month, I intend to resume querying for Wide Horizon, complete major revisions on The Pioneer, and begin work on the eventual sequel to The Pioneer. All of this is leading to the end of August when, if I’ve yet to receive any interest from an agent regarding Wide Horizon, I intend to submit The Pioneer to Pitch Wars.
All of this means, of course, that I have a lot of work ahead of me. In terms of writing, the rest of the summer will be one of the most grueling periods of my life. But I feel this experience, as with all other similar experiences before it, will be rewarding, and see me take at least a few steps closer to my ultimate goal: publication, recognition, and a chance to share my work with the world.
That said, here’s how it will start this week:
For starters, I’m going back to where it all began: my first novel, Wide Horizon. While my more dedicated readers surely know I’ve been querying my debut novel since earlier this year, thus far I’ve had limited success.
I know I haven’t been at it long. I know that the process can take years, that it’s especially difficult for unpublished writers, and those without formal training. But given the speed with which my “no” responses have been coming in, I feel like a rethink is in order.
I plan to start by reviewing the manuscript. However, by this point, I’ve had too many people compliment my work to believe the manuscript is the problem. That leads me to the rest of my query. From day one, I’ve been dissatisfied with my query letter. I just keep feeling that it’s missing something. I fear that, in my efforts to emulate other successful query letters I’ve seen, I’ve created something that really doesn’t sound like me. Now, of course, the trick is to find a way to write something in my voice that still hits all the appropriate points. If any of my fellow writers reading this have experience writing query letters, your feedback would be greatly appreciated.
All in all, I plan to review (and if need be revise) my manuscript, then rewrite both the query letter and synopsis. I’m giving myself until the end of the week to accomplish all of this, and hoping I can do it all in far less time.
After so much delay and procrastination, the time has come. Anything I want to do to change this novel must be done now. I plan to begin next week with a comprehensive read-through, during which I’ll make preliminary changes and take notes, followed by what I expect to be a grueling month or so of hard work.
I love this story, really. But I’m always suspicious when I write something this long and have a hard time finding anything wrong with it. I worry I’m missing something. I may consult a few fellow writers, see if they would be willing to look the novel over. I need this to be good. I need it to be great. And I have about a month and a half to get it there.
Beyond The Pioneer
Looking ahead, I find myself once again trying to decide what to write next. I know this much: whatever my next project is, it will take place within the confines of When We Left Earth. That means either looking past The Pioneer or going back to finally write Pathfinder.
For such a cool story idea, one I enjoy so much, Pathfinder has been incredibly difficult to write. Yet I keep feeling the urge to go back, if only because I can’t shake the feeling that the story must begin there. However, recently I’ve been getting a much better feel for the eventual sequel to The Pioneer. Time will tell, I suppose, what direction I take from here. One thing’s for certain: I need a new WIP.
As I said, I have a lot of work ahead of me. But nothing worth doing is ever easy. And hopefully by the end of the summer I’ll have something new to smile about. For now, keep reading, and as always, dare to dream. – MK