Thursday, June 3, 2010

The Query Phase

Spent the weekend editing the recently completed novel, and earlier this week sent out the first queries. Sent only a few to start with as I get back up on the query horse.

Though it probably needs some work (I tweak it further after each one I send) the following is essentially what I'm using:

When a late winter storm unearths an ancient shipwreck, the sleepy town of Sully's Rump is turned upside-down, first by the media, then by the pirates who come back to reclaim their ship.

Local historian Arthur Cobb wants the legendary ship for himself, but so does his nemesis, gazillionaire businessman Barney Zimmerman. Caught between the two is Chris Duggan, the boy who found the wreck, who just wants to help the pirates get home.

He realizes the only way to do that is to rebuild the ship and fulfill the pirate curse, but soon discovers that dislodging the pirates from the Rump may prove even more difficult a task than deciphering the curse that brought them there.

Spanning a magical summer in the life of an isolated community filled with indelible characters, SWASH! is approximately 88,000 words and has never before been published. In terms of where it fits on the literary spectrum, I'd call it Christopher Moore meets Willy Wonka.

I used AgentQuery to narrow the search to those who don't mind "quirky," because I think at heart, that's what it is.

Also Tweeted the other day (only half-jokingly) that I'm not querying agents looking for "great storytelling" or "something I'll long remember" (both found in agent profiles) because frankly, I'm simply not that confident in myself and don't want to waste their time.

Confess too it was hard sending out the first query, but got easier with the next few. I suppose having been rejected a few hundred times already on previous efforts, I'm just not looking forward to the certain rejections to come. But it's all part of the game, I guess.

Printed out two reading copies and sent them along to beta readers. Two copies burned a single thirty-dollar black Inkjet cartridge. Hilarious.

That's how they getcha . . .

Will start on the next opus soon and keep you posted!


Cate Gardner said...

Good luck, it's a scary world out there. :D

Brendan said...

Heh. You got that right! And thanks! Helps to know there's others who know exactly what I'm talking about.