Wednesday, February 07, 2007

A Fact Checking Morality Tale....

I think this is one of those posts that requires a disclaimer before I eat up any of your day.

I'm about to embark on one of those "OMG, Liane is such a whack-job" stories that won't make a bit of sense unless you're a writer trying to sell a book manuscript. So if you aren't, and that kind of thing doesn't hit it for you, feel free to move on.

No, really. I won't hold it against you.

Nor is this post going to do much to reassure my regs that I have recovered from Weird Al day. And for those of you who still hold Weird Al Day against me, read on, because when I hang this post, I'm pretty sure good old Al will fade back into cyber-oblivion, where I'm fairly sure most feel he belongs. (:::wistful sigh:::)

I queried my number one most favorite literary agency in the world late last week. For those of you who don't know, a query is an author's sales pitch for an unpublished book. The goal of the query is to get an agent or editor to say--girlfriend, if you don't get that book in my inbox pronto, I'm going to hunt you down and pilfer your hard drive until I find the goods myself.

Now before you get your thong in a twist, I'm not saying TKA is my favorite literary agency because I'm fond of brown noses. :).

The Knight Agency is my favorite agency in the sense that I'd so party with the gals at TKA even if they snapped my pencils in half, stole my paper and urged me to run, not walk, to 101 reasons to stop writing.

TKA places some really good books--the kinds of books I like to both read and write. They also go the extra mile and work hard to soften the face of the writing community. If that's not enough to give you the warm fuzzies, try this--they also make the world a better place while they're doing it by raising funds for breast cancer research.

So what's not to love, right?

So, anyhow, there was a point, and I must find my way back to it. Which backwards::::

Oh,right. My query.

Since TKA represents some young adult (YA) titles I have enjoyed--and one of the books on their list actually *inspired* It's (so not) A Barbie World--it only felt natural to give them a shout and ask them if they'd like to read my brand new dream child.

Let me tell you now, a writer never worked so hard honing her pitch. That one page letter took me longer to cook up than five chapters of the original manuscript. And in the end, I think I wrote a totally killin' query.

At least I thought so until 4:23 a.m, this morning. That's when the hot flashes/OCD/Panic Attack that are the hallmarks of Post Query Stress Disorder set in. I sat bolt upright in bed, shivering against a cold sweat, worrying about something I'd said in my query.

You see, I cited one of my YA writer heroes who wrote a fun, fresh, high-concept title called "I was a Teenage Popsicle". I read about it first on TKA's blog.

But at 4:23 this morning, as I fanned away my hot flash, it dawned on me that I wasn't quite exactly for sure POSITIVE that the agency actually *placed* the book. I just remembered reading about the book's release on the TKA blog.

Can you say heart thumping agony? So here I am, up in the wee hours, cussing like wild woman. Sweat is dripping onto my keyboard as I pound my way across the net to Publisher's Marketplace to find out what agent actually PLACED I was a Teenage Popsicle.

And it wasn't TKA.


Now in my defense, in checking the agency website, I found that Bev Katz Rosenbaum truly is their client.

So....I'm thinking she may have switched agents.

Now I'm praying when TKA opens my query and see's me so confidently comparing my work to "I was a Teenage Popsicle", which I in turn attribute to TKA. they don't automatically say.....good grief, what a whack job.... "Here's another one for the 86 file..."

But if they do?

Well, if I get an automatic rejection....then dammit, I deserve it. Because in my eagerness to hit the "send" key, I didn't thoroughly check the facts. And I know better than that.

And I'd still love me some TKA.

Moral of story? My high school band director was absolutely right when he said.......Let me tell you something about the word ASS-U-ME....


This too shall pass.

So many books to write, so little time to sell them....