The Querying Show: Episode 5 “Standing Out in a Crowd”

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Welcome to The Querying Show’s 5th Episode!

Until the New Year you will witness every juicy (or completely stagnant) detail of our SP Staff Member’s querying life in the SLUSH PILE!

(Check out our rules and reasons in our intro post here!)

Will CR’s/Write_Or_Left achieve AGENT success? Or will it result with a querying and MS reboot? Dying to know? Follow us to see how Write_Or_Left ‘s querying journey will end up!

***Note: There will only be two episodes in November & December!*** 

SO…..Today is the 9th week of CR’s journey. On the last episode, we broke down his query to show you the most essential parts that a Query should have. Today, we will hear from CR and standing out in a crowd.

Let’s check in our with brave querying fellow and see how things are progressing. (Click here for Episode 1 & 2 & 3 & 4.)  

SP: Bonjour, CR/Write_Or_Left. As always, let’s start with the STATS. 

Any new queries?

Rejections?

Requests?

Tell us!

CR/Write_Or_Left:

As for queries, no. School & finals were the focus of my last month. I did, however, get another rejection. It was not personalized. The rejection and the schoolwork has created a building anticipation to get back to writing!

SP: In terms of writing, what have you been working on the last month (apart from school)? 

CR/Write_Or_Left: 

I have been working on my Instagram and social media, actually. I’ve also been reading a ton. I’ve been wanting to do a full-on character revitalization…get ready for a new EVAN!

SP: Congrats on getting over 25,000 followers on Instagram! We look forward to your coming giveaway! Can you give us the history on how Write_Or_Left came to be and how you built that kind of following?

CR/Write_Or_Left: 

Instagram started out as a place for me to write out a few short pieces of fiction as well as post writing tips I found in a book I was reading about creating characters. I was bored on a car ride, and I just keep posting and commenting and being involved on the platform. Once I hit 1k, I started taking it a bit more seriously and did more research on hashtags, started to figure out which content my followers liked most, then I became more consistent.

The main purpose is just to have a fun place for writers to help each other and for me to give advice from my experience. It also helps me direct traffic to blogs that might help followers too. Eventually, I hope my followers will also buy my book if I publish it!

Check out and follow his IG here! Look for his GIVEAWAY in the NEW YEAR!

SP: How about a bit of backstory for our readers: Who are some of your influences and favorite authors? Do you write anything besides Middle Grade Fantasy? 

CR/Write_Or_Left: 

What else do I write? Blogs on how to write fiction, but mostly just MG.

Influences: I hope to plot my books as well as Brandon Mull; emulate the humor of Rick Riordan; create lovable characters like JK Rowling, and create worlds as beautiful as JRR Tolkien.

SP: Honesty moment: What is the best & worst thing someone has said about you writing?

CR/Write_Or_Left: 

Best: “I never read books fast, but I read your book in THREE DAYS!”

Worst: “I feel like you wrote these parts just to put words on a page.”

SP: ON the last episode you mentioned that QUERYING made you doubt yourself as a writer and made you want to improve so that you could stand out among the thousands of other writers pursuing agents and publishing contracts…have you found a way?

CR/Write_Or_Left: 

Still learning. BUT cool story: an eleven year old reader, a brilliant girl, read my book in a weekend and gave me some KILLER feedback. It was eye opening. Don’t knock the readers–young or old– take that advice, people! Get it, use it, and don’t shrink back! I guess, hardworking and never giving up is what I got at the moment.

SP: ON Self-doubt, (dealing with what you think is failure) Self-Care, Burn-Out, and Making a Plan that helps you succeed in a non-stressful way. Here are three posts for readers on: 

1: Guest Post: What do you do with failure?

2. Guest Post: How to (somewhat) be a productive writer

3. Staff Post: Reset: A No-Stress Approach to a New Year

On another note: Standing out in today’s crowd is not easy. There’s a unique balance between YOU and what the INDUSTRY wants and the standards that they seek.

Our greatest tips are:

BE YOURSELF and write from those unique experiences/thoughts/imagination inside of you in a way that no one else can do.

DREAM UP and CREATE a killer premise.

PRACTICE your craft.

KNOW your genre.

READ prolifically.

KNOW your readers.

BE AVAILABLE online, gain a following, be present where people can find you.

RESEARCH and POLISH the best you can before you send out your work.

REACH OUT to other writers.

BELIEVE in yourself.

Timing, patience, hardwork, and faith pay off! You will get there!

Next week, we will share a set of marketing tools on how to stand out among today’s readers! Don’t miss it!

SP Querying & Pub TIP:

BIO: Apart from the smashing query, premise, and hook, the right BIO can help you to stand out. Why are you the right person to write this story? Maybe there is nothing but imagination under your belt, but I doubt it. Each person is incredibly unique and has unique experiences. Add a few in! Personality/humor.

TAKE A BREAK: When you need a break from querying, write your synopsis. Story board your ideas. Make an aesthetic. Read a new book. Take a rest. Do something else creative.

LOOK TO THE PROS: Looking for someone to edit your query? WriteOnEditing –it’s affordable and professional.

 

CR & Nova Signing off!

 

 

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