The First Rejection

So, I received my first rejection today..........

My initial reaction was to freak out, but since I was on my way to a class, I had to suffer in silence.

Don't get me wrong, I'm familiar with rejection: boys, books, friends, families, random strangers on the street. But, regardless of how many times it happens to me, it still hurts.
There's a sharp pain that I can't ignore.

As some of you may already know, this is the second book I've queried. The first book I queried (Manuscript 1) was a mess--and by mess I mean, that entire book was falling apart. So with this book, naturally, I was hoping for a better reaction.
First off, I don't want to bash the agent I queried because she is a very sweet woman, and the agency she works for is splendid. Heck, she responded in two days--that's a record.
I just get so annoyed with the standard, "Thanks for the opportunity to review your project. Unfortunately this isn't the right fit for us...." 
I was hoping for something else.

However, I will not give up yet.
There are still soo many agents out there.
And I know that Unbroken will be published.
I just have to have hope, and be patient.

I mean, seriously, I'm just thankful I could make it this far.

Does anyone have any crazy rejection letters they want to share? Feel free to comment below!

Happy Query Days!

The Waiting Game: Day 2

It's been two days since I sent out my queries.


I get that, obviously, that's nothing. I mean, two days doesn't compare to two months.

But I'm still freaking out. I really want my baby to get agented. And then, hopefully--may God grant it true--I'll get it published.

Happy Waiting Games to all those in the same boat as me.
And may the odds, ever, be in your favor!

Connecting and Developing Your Book Characters

Oh, how I wish I could say I had some sort of super power that allowed me to create such amazing, page-turning, stories.

But I don't.

I'm just a plain old human.

With my first book, (I'll call it Manuscript 1,) The characters didn't come to me as naturally as I wanted. I'd read other blogs where people said stuff like, "Yeah, sometimes I turn into my main character for a day." Or, "I could probably have full-blown conversations with my book characters forever." And I'm just like:

"What am I doing wrong here?!?"

I couldn't connect with my characters like I wanted to in M1. I could write down my ideas about them, but I never really felt them. With my new book, Unbroken, the writing process was totally different. I had just finished M1, and, already, I could hear the whispers of a different character. 
I heard her voice. It was magical. 
She was telling me her life story, and I was writing it down. We worked together, like a team, and I truly believe that it's an awesome storyline.

You might be asking, "What did you do differently?"

To be honest, I don't know if I can pin-point the exact reason of change, but I'll share a few tips with you anyway.

-1.) I didn't force my second manuscript to happen--it just kind of did. With M1, I was writing for myself, but with M2, I was writing for my characters. It was a gradual thing.

-2.) I tried my absolute best to capture every emotion of my main character. To me, she's real, and she really wanted me to tell her story in the same way that she would. This, in turn, added a strong voice to my novel. 

-3.) This next tip is weird--be warned--but, whenever I had major writer's block, I'd ask my character, "What would you do in this situation?" And if I got no reply, I'd ask again. I'd keep asking until I knew what  that next paragraph would be about. 

These three things, together, is how I finished my second novel. I didn't want to give up on my characters. I believed in them, and I wanted their stories to be heard. 

I'd love to hear your feedback. So, if you're a writer, tell me, how do you connect with your characters? Everyone's story is different! 

The Query Process

This has got to be the scariest part of finding an agent.


With the help of Google, this is the definition of a query letter:
"A query letter is a formal letter sent to magazine editors, literary agents and sometimes publishing houses or companies. Writers write query letters to propose writing ideas."
What's scary about writing a query is summarizing your 100,000 word novel into 400 words or less. That means, every word used in your query better be a good one! Agents don't play. Queries are a serious matter for your novel, and if an agent doesn't like it, you are sent the letter of doom--also known as a rejection letter. And when your inbox begins to pile up with them, you find yourself in an alternate universe filled with anger, hurt, and confusion (refer to the GIF with Jennifer Lawrence.)

Every query has three paragraphs to it: The hook, The mini-synopsis (don't get me started on a full-synopsis,) and the writer's bio.

However, when I write a query, instead of a long writer's bio--because who am I kidding, I don't even have a bio--I add a closing hook.

The first sentence and the last sentence of a query letter is extremely important when it comes to writing a query. Not only is it the first and last thing they see, but it's what draws in their attention.

My advice for those writing queries:

-Steer far from long sentences. If there are more than twenty words in your sentence, rewrite it. Agents want short, enticing sentences that don't ruin the flow of your story. So please, don't drown your query with words.

-Don't give your entire plot away. Whenever I read queries, I notice that the writer over-tells the story, or they give away every plot twist. Please, give the reader some space to imagine.

-Do mention who you are and give thanks in your query. I've forgotten to do that once. I was so worried about everything else that I didn't include my name, or best regards. Just imagine how I felt. (Refer to the Jennifer Lawrence GIF if needed.)

-Do allow other people to help you with your query. Unfortunately, your pair of ogles will only get you so far. By having a few people look over it, they'll catch errors that you can't.

Welp, that's all folks!

Got any questions? Leave a comment below.

The Book Life

Hello, blog world,

Today, my friends, is a BIG day for me.

But before I get into that, let me share a little bit about myself.

My name is Britney.

I am a city girl, born and raised in the good ol' Kansas City, KS. (However, I've always dreamed of being a country girl . . .)

I like alot! And I sing in the shower.

I prefer cold tea over coffee.

I am twenty years old, and I am an active student in college who has changed her major more times than I can count.

I am a writer.

I love writing more than I love sleeping--not kidding.

And I could probably watch movies all day.

But, moving on. The reason this day is such a big deal is that I've sent out four queries!

Now, if you're unfamiliar with a query, a query is basically a blurb of your book (you usually find this on the inside jacket or the back cover of a novel.)
If you've ever experienced the querying process, then you know how nerve-racking it can be.
This is the second book I've queried, and right now, I'm trying my absolute best not to poop my pants.
I hate waiting.
And these agents probably won't get back to me for weeks.
So how do I kill the time?
I create another blog. (Yes, I said another one.)
Again, I love to write!

That's all for today's post!
I will be updating soon!

The Book Process: Rejections From Publishing Houses

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