Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Progress Report

Writing romance is a bit of a double-edged sword.

People don't take it seriously - on Authonomy the tone of the comments gets a little arch - from both men and women. More than one person has commented using the phrase 'chic-lit' as in I have a good or classic chic-lit story.

Er - well - actually - no.

Chic-lit has a distinct voice, very breezy, self-centered, first person. The main character is a 20-something female with a shoe fetish - for example Jimmy Choos. The plot revolves around her shopping for either new shoes or better sex - and usually drinking a whole lot in the process.

The genre has been pronounced dead by the agent/gatekeepers. (All bow and say 'amen'.)

Chic-lit was hot while it lasted. Like last year's designer shoes - once it's out of style the comparison is an insult. Or would be if I were that sensitive. (I'm not.)

However, on a much better note, I'm getting compliments on humor, dialog and characterization.

But, yes there is one, I don't think anyone is reading past the first two chapters.

The worst side-effect of Authonomy is that the system discourages more than a quick skim of the first couple of chapters. After that, it's off to the next read - gotta read and back a bunch of books to be read and backed in return.

"Lunch" hit number 70 on the romance chart this week. "Moon" hit 90. These are the best numbers I've seen in a while. Currently both book are in the 150 to 200 range. I probably should take both books down now, before they slip any farther backward.

I've contacted two editors - I would like to get an evaluation of "Lunch" before I decide what to do with it. It appears that Black Lyon has passed on it - though I've not got a rejection slip from them. And there are rumors that Carina Press is going to be 'all rights' not just e-publishing rights. There is no reason to sell them a book that can't go to paperback.

That leaves me two options - ABNA or agents.

I did very well at ABNA last year. I have my 3 reviews (posted here - somewhere) and a year's worth of editing. My pitches are better, too.

Querying agents - well - I don't know. According to Litopia it has never been easier to get an agent. Many people who got fired from the Big Six put up an agent's shingle. But that doesn't mean they can sell a book to a publishing company. (I haven't forgotten #query fail - or the flame fest at Militant Writer.)

So I will continue to poke around, looking for an editor for "Lunch" in hope of selling a few hundred copies for a buck each. This may well get me 'discovered' in time to sell "Moon."

There is something else - a RWA conference in Nashville in July. It may be worth looking into.

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