Saturday, July 26, 2008

Lots Going On!

Well, I just got back last weekend from the family beach vacation. Much sun and fun! My tan's fading...bummer. I need to get my vitamin D and sit in the backyard to reclaim that little bit of color.

I'm feverishly getting ready for the RWA National Writer's Conference in San Francisco next week. I have not one, but two agent appointments! And I even have 2 books to sell. One's a secret, though, so I won't share with you about it yet (it needs a couple of weeks of revising). Really, I'm only focusing on selling THIRTEEN at this time, but it will be a boon to have a 2nd book in my back pocket to offer up to an agent who may be on the fence about taking me on as a client. Instead of one book to sell for me, they'd get two! That's double their commission if they sell both. Right?

The first agent appointment is a "pitch" appointment which lasts 10-15 minutes. I basically have to sum up the entire book in one or two sentences, then have a Q&A with the agent. She'll then decide whether she's interested in having me send her more. During the pitch, she doesn't see a sample of my writing or nothing. It's all very interesting and subjective. Needless to say, I'm shaking in my flip-flops at the whole idea. I know my material like the back of my hand, but I'm not much of a "public speaker" and my nerves always get the best of me. I'm working on cue cards today!

The other agent appointment is a 45 minute followup and will be more relaxed (I hope like hell). She has already seen my proposal for THIRTEEN so at least she has an idea of my writing and story-telling ability. I've compiled a list of questions for her about the book's marketability, the market in general and the author/agent relationship. It'll be interesting (and scary) to hear her opinion of THIRTEEN!

So why go to all this trouble, you ask? Because New York print publishers prefer agented submissions and some won't take any submission if it doesn't come from an agent. My chances of selling to a big New York publisher are much better if I had an agent doing it for me. Plus, agents will negotiate the contracts and take care of all that business, freeing up my time to write. But getting an agent is nearly as hard, if not harder, to obtain than that illusive NY contract!

Keep your fingers crossed and wish me luck!

The conference should be fun: networking with many writer's, getting tons of free books and promotional materials, getting autographed books from some of my favorite authors, dinner with the Divas, craft, career and promotion workshops, and publisher spotlights. There's always a bunch of publisher parties to crash, and after hours bar hopping, too. It'll be a whirlwind four days!

See you on the flip side!

Don't forget to enter my Summer Contest. The days are counting down to the July 31 deadline!