Tuesday, October 15, 2013

My "Battle for the Wastelands" Plan (and more...)

Hey everybody. I know it's been awhile, but I've been rather busy with graduate school and my various freelance writing clients, including this lucrative gig covering a recent trade show. I haven't had a lot of time to blog or even work on my personal writing (my fiction word count this month is a whopping 232). But I've got something up my sleeve you all might like.

It's been a little over a year since I finished Battle for the Wastelands. Since then I've submitted it to three publishers and a whole bunch of agents. Although I've gotten requests from one agent and one publisher, neither of them went anywhere. Their responses, however, proved quite helpful for further revisions, especially when paired with a helpful discussion on worldbuilding with my friend Matt from one of my writing groups. I also managed to cut it down to 100,000 words from 104,000, hopefully making it easier to sell.

Here's my plan for the book for the remainder of the year. I've submitted it to five agents this month. I intend to keep submitting it to agents only until mid-January, when the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award contest opens up. I intended to submit it last year, but dawdled while waiting to hear back from a publisher (whom I later found out had lost the manuscript) and by the time I decided to stop waiting, it had filled up. There's a lesson in that.

Should ABNA not provide the results I'm looking for (even if I don't win, one of my friends got a book deal from being a semi- or quarter-finalist, I can't remember which), I will seriously consider submitting it to a small press. One of my other writing friends suggested I submit to a publisher that's put out a pair of anthologies he edited and based on the anthologies' cover art, that might be a really good idea. One reason I'm leery of small presses is that their cover art is often shoddy and obviously CGI, but this one is much higher on the food chain.

In the meantime, I'll try to finish The Thing In The Woods. Most of the actual story is written, which is a bit of a problem--at present it's 36,000 words. One of the people at the pulp panel at DragonCon said 60,000 is an ideal pulp length, while one of the agents I found won't represent anything below 65,000 words. Given I've already planned a series centered around the protagonist I could make the third story the first book in the series and make this a prequel novella, but I'd rather not. My writing groups can surely come up with some suggestions to fill it out.

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