Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Crossing Fingers & Toes

I am so excited!

My heart is pounding.

The words repeat over and over in my head: “It’s up. It’s on. It’s being reviewed!”

So, this morning, I woke up to find in my inbox a notice from Matt over at The Quintessential Questionable Query Experiment informing me that my query is up on his site today. I’ll be getting my reviews tomorrow. Thanks in advance to all of you who read the query on his blog and offered any feedback.

When I started writing, I was doing it just for fun…to pass the time as my family anxiously awaited the next installment of Justin Somper’s Vampirates series. I tried my hand at a fan-fiction story using the characters from Vampirates. Very quickly, I realized I know absolutely nothing about ships, sailing, or pirates, and couldn’t tell the Tempest twins’ story nearly as well as Mr. Somper. But the writing bug had bitten me. I decided to try my hand at writing a clean, vampire story which I could read to my kids without blushing or changing words/phrases.

Thus, Lily was born.

I’ve written the three books in Lily’s trilogy since then, as well as a companion novel (NaNoWriMo 2010, yet to be completed) and several short stories unrelated to the realm of Chaos. I even earned Honorable Mention for one of my short stories for an online contest.

The praise from my family and friends for the stories I’d written (along with the pleasure writing gives me) planted the seed of hope that maybe one day I could call myself a published writer…an author! For the past year and a half, I’ve joined countless websites offering writing and/or publishing advice, read numerous books about the craft of writing and the struggles of getting published, and sought the help of everyone I know to help improve my chances of obtaining my dream.

Work on the dreaded query letter and synopsis began several months ago. When I sent it to Matt for review, it had already undergone several revisions implementing the advice and suggestions of my beta readers. I felt really good about how it turned out. Then another website I follow offered query reviews, and I jumped at the chance, wanting as much feedback as I could get.

It will be interesting to compare the results from Matt’s review, the suggestions his readers offer, and what I was told from the other website. My hope is that these experiences will help me to improve my query letter so I can land myself an agent and move one step closer to living my dream.


  1. Nice to see you, Samantha. Can't wait for Matthew's notes tomorrow. You're in good hands.

  2. Thanks Joshua! Nice to meet you. I'm very excited to get his input on how to improve.

  3. I'll check it out tomorrow too. Matt always has such great advie.

  4. Hi Samantha, new follower from Matt's blog. Looks great and I can't wait to see what he has to say tomorrow.

  5. I always think it's a pretty bold move to submit a query to Matthew's blog. That's really putting yourself out there.

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  6. Thanks Natalie, Johanna, and Arlee. I won't lie; I was a little nervous putting it out there for the whole world to read, but then I got to thinking...if I can't send it out to my peers, how on earth did I think I could send it to an agent?

    Writing the query letter was harder (in my opinion) than growing the tough skin necessary to take criticism constructively. It's funny; the 'bad' reviews I got in the beginning of my writing adventure may have reduced me to tears, but those are the ones that really taught me and forced me to improve.

    Thanks for your support!