January Critique FINALLY Received … Query and 1st 1000 Words

After the desperate, painful months of waiting; like a hopeful child for the day of their birth, diligently marking off 364 individual days, to finally arrive, and the subsequent let down to occur: the e-mail magically appeared in my in-box and vanished of the same fashion.



noun 1.a detailed analysis and assessment of something, especially a literary, philosophical, or political theory.

(I believe it is the word detailed that has me thrown, let’s check that out…)



adjective 1.having many details or facts; showing attention to detail.

Yes, that is the clincher, having many details.  I would pain you and look up many, but I will not.

I should be the gracious receiver, that my friend encourages me to be, but I am reminded that this was a critique in which I paid monies to, to further enrich and expand in a craft I have chosen to excel and be competent.  I received approximately 5 quick blurbs, not even full sentences. 

The short, short of the not-so-long of it is…Don’t be choppy, use varied sentence styles, but in this key, compact version in the middle of your query, keep sentences flowing with rich detailed information and, most importantly, set your HOOK.  You were able to break your manuscript into a 2 page synopsis, now break your synopsis into a single paragraph and then into a single barbed sentence.  Armed with this bit of tackle, we will now be ready for pitch wars. 

On the last page of my manuscript sample were the words, “Terrific, great set-up, I wanted to keep reading.”  

In which, if we had not already been playing e-mail pong, I should have responded, “I would gladly send you my full.”

Write on!  

And so the Story goes …

I regret to report that I am still waiting for the return of my detailed critique.  I will try to explain the pain in regaling such patience.

3-29-15 / Sunday

Deadline came and went receiving nary a word with awaited for constructive criticism.

3-30-15 / Monday

Trauma by way of mental anguish having waited over 2 months to receive Query letter, Synopsis and 1st chapter back before re-submitting to other agencies, contests, etc. with needed fixes. (Yes, I promise I am working other projects, but slowly dy – ing as each minute ticks by.)

3-31-15 / Tuesday

Still no e-mail in either box, chewed nails to nubbins, finished 1 gallon of coffee ice-cream, 1 pint of tequila, smoked 1st pack of cherry-cigarillos. (Not really, but it still could happen.)

4-1-15 / Wednesday

In between – jumping between – in boxes, I consider possible options… #1 Call company who offered class/No offered phone number-Only generic comment box… #2 Call the agency directly and look a fool??  (I chose option 1.)

4-2-15 / Thursday

Now there is no critique in either e-mail or response from said company I paid fee to, so I…Chose option 2 using phone number that was on my received submission and, of course, instead of talking to secretary for agency, this happens to be agent’s personal voicemail.  (Look a fool, completed.)

4-3-15 / Friday

In the wee A.M Hours-No returned phone call from agency; or e-mail inquiry comment from hosted company, or waited for critique.  Pacific Time meridian, so 12 o’clock west coast would be 3 o’clock east coast, most likely end of day considering it is Friday before Easter, and I decided to send an over-apologetic reply e-mail to the web-submission address that confirmed original reception.  (Wow, are you still with me?)

Late Night Friday agent repliesAGENT replies via e-mail kindly and sincerely that they need a couple more days.

4-6-15 / Monday

In the afternoon I receive e-mail response from comment box submission/hosted company replied-did you check junk mail??  (No help to be had here and a whole lotta too late.)

Is there a moral here?  I am not sure as I am still in the hold pattern, but at least the gracious agent responded.  The hesitancy in contacting any of these avenues comes directly from social media comments – about how authors screw themselves by not following proper protocols.

Recently, one example in particular was, an aspiring writer had over 100 agent e-mail addresses in the send to box depersonalizing their submission to each and every one, an instant rejection and possible black-list.  (The joke being this poor soul would definitely need a pen name now.)

The second example was during #PITMAD where an aspiring writer tweeted a negative and UN-professional comment to a requesting agency and then was warned publicly to follow proper etiquette.

The third example could now be…me??  How an over-anxious, wanna-be published and represented author couldn’t hold her horses – say it isn’t so!  Hopefully, it will just be added into my critique notes on, “How to avoid rookie mistakes when submitting to agents.”

Write On – ❤ Jessica

Who Would Have Ever Thought…

Who would have ever thought you could be so excited to receive criticism?  Constructive criticism that is! It has been 2 painful months of waiting for feedback from an agency that specifically is going to critique my Query Letter, Synopsis, and the first three chapters of my novel!!  (I am screaming; can you hear it?)

Through Writers Digest I attended a webinar, specifically, “How to Avoid Rookie Mistakes When Submitting to Agents.”  The course was $89.99 and offered these 3 all critical feedbacks.  I have, of course, in that painfully long amount of time, re-written most of it.  But to see if the changes I have made are in the right direction is kil – ling me!

I have seen similar webinars and professional feed-backs that are much more expensive, and this was an offer too good to pass up.  I also admire the agency who offered the course.  The information stated our material would be sent back by 3-29-15, but that was yesterday, a Sunday, so I am giving them until Monday, today, as the actual end date.  We all make mistakes, right?

One would fret, “Did they receive my material at all?”  Well, I know that they did because I got an e-mail, dutifully archived, from the agent replying my submission was received.  From this past Friday until the end of business today: (8 p.m.?) I have been jumping back and forth from multiple e-mails to see if this gem of disappointment has finally arrived.

If by the end of the week I still have not received my packet should I call them?  The last thing I need to do is make a bigger fool of myself than I already have a tendency to do.  Face to the sun I am smiling bright, big-red-felt marker bring it on!

Keep writing, ❤ Jessica