Original Query: Almost fainting onstage should be a foolproof way to lose a battle of the bands. But seventeen-year-old singer Charlie’s sabotage backfires, and her all-girl band the Wretched Gretchens takes first place anyway. Cue the sappy “Hallelujah” music. It’s not that Charlie wants her band to break up—she’s just sick of her stage persona… Continue reading Query Letter Critique (YA Contemporary)
The Original Query: Address Address Address To Whom This May Concern, GO BLOG YOURSELF! What better way to showcase concrete research on blogging as a legit form of writing for students then to place it next to blog entries from the researcher, and teacher, herself? My book, GO BLOG YOURSELF, would include entries from two of… Continue reading Query Critique (Non-fiction)
Original Query: Dear (Agent), Small-time thief, big-time troublemaker, Tristan Storey has been accused of a murder he didn’t commit. And is going to hang for it. With a rope squeezed tightly around his neck, Tristan knows it’s the end, but just as his consciousness flickers, lightning tears down from the sky. It smashes the gallows, freeing the thief.… Continue reading Query Critique
I know I said I’d post a query critique each Wednesday, but this week I’m bumping it out to Friday (sorry!) to share some news with you. One of my dear friends (and the person I often refer to as “Critique Goddess”) is launching a new website for writers, and I cannot say enough about… Continue reading The Girl with the Green Pen
The Original Query: THE LOST STORY, completed at 80,000 words, is the tragic and triumphant story of Danielle (Dani) Caldwell, an American girl who meets a Cuban boy and falls in love, only to find their world-views divided over the Cuban Revolution. The story opens in 1980. Dani's walking through the streets of Manhattan when… Continue reading Query Critique
Hey blog friends! LONG time no speak - color me embarrassed. Did I mention you look super cute today? AND CAN YOU BELIEVE IT’S November?! (HAPPY NaNoWriMo!) As you know I was working on SECRET project, then I was editing SECRET project, then I started critiquing and beta’ing for a few of my friends/agent sisters,… Continue reading Query Letter OR First Page Critiques…
A couple of amazing things I had to share with my fellow writing friends... If you’ve ever wanted an opportunity to ask a literary agent ANY question regarding publishing - now’s your chance! My agent (Barbara Poelle) is doing a monthly column for Writers Digest where she’ll be answering questions from YOU. No writing/publishing question… Continue reading Special Post: Ask an agent ANYthing and Harper is open to unagented submissions!
Friends hate me writing my book. First of all, hi blog friends. *waves* It’s September, my how the summer FLEW by. I’m still in the writing cave, but something came to my attention last night that had my little hackles all raised and scary-like. And when I get mad, it’s NOT a pretty sight. There’s… Continue reading Friends hate me writing my book.
READ! No, seriously. Put your laptop away and open up a book. Read everything you can get your hands on in your genre (and beyond) and devour the words on the page. Reading is one of the most important things a writer can do to help with their craft. Go on, I dare you to… Continue reading 5 things you can do to immediately improve your writing.
If you’re a writer, you know how difficult it is to nail that elusive (and all-powerful) first line. Writing an entire book is often more enjoyable (and possibly easier) than coming up with that griping, you’ve GOT to read on sentence. Here are 25 first sentences from pretty amazing books that you can mull over… Continue reading 25 First Sentences