I can't believe it.
It's not often that I'll set a goal and actually meet it (I'm not lazy, just have a tendancey to set somewhat unrealistic goals).
As of yesterday, I successfully completed a project that I've been working on since the spring. I've alluded to it in a few posts...
And now I'm DONE!!!!
"Um, so Jennie, what the heck are you talking about?" - you're probably wondering. Well hold on to your fedoras people because...
I wrote a novel !!!!!
Can you BELIEVE IT?? Frankly, I'M having a hard time believing it.
I know, I know, there are 50,000,000 authors out there who think that they've written the next "big thing" only to be told that they stink by agents and editors. A handful of those closest to me have been reading as I've been going and their feedback has been amazing. Granted, they love me and are therefore terribly biased, BUT I do not have friends and family who offer "unconditional support." By that, I mean that if I were tone-deaf but wanted to be the next Canadian Idol, they WOULD NOT be waiting in line with me. They love me and all, but would rather hurt my feelings privately than send me out into the world where others would destroy me, publicly.
Through endless revisions, countless edits and a couple "this is the worst thing that's ever been written since the dawn of time" moments, I pushed through and have created a manuscript that I'm really proud of.
It's 80,000 words of awesome.
The next step, which I'll be starting this weekend, is to "query" agents and get someone to represent me. Throughout the last six months, I've been drafting my "query" letter (basically a hook to get an agent to actually read my manuscript), making lists of agents and working on my synopsis (400 - 600 word total -plot summary). With both of them done, I'm actually ready to start submitting it.
I'M SO EXCITED!!!!
So what's your book about? Well, it's called "Random Acts du Merde," which for those who don't speak French, roughly translates to "Random Acts of Shit." As you can tell, the French makes the title a wee bit classier.
I've read many 'a blogs that caution writers from putting their novels on-line because other authors sometimes have sticky fingers. As such, I won't be posting any snippits until I have secured representation. That being said though, I am too excited to just keep sitting on everything as all I want to do is climb onto our very steep roof and yell it for all to hear. So, I figure a nice compromise would be to share my query letter. It's the same one that I'll be sending out to agents so I think it's okay.
Here it is:
Chasing after a new life without a map or compass is like trying to make homemade Chinese food in the microwave (ridiculous and potentially lethal) but Gracie doesn’t know any other way. At 28, the sweet life that she’d stumbled into has flaked away faster than the layers of a still-warm-from-the-oven cheese croissant.
First, Gracie calls her boyfriend-of-10-year’s bluff, and winds up single. Two weeks later, she’s bumped out of her work-from-condo career and her Hetero-Life-Partner moves across the country. Thankfully, she gets five months of severance to work it all out, which is just enough to keep her from leaping off of her 11th story balcony.
With a little help, Gracie takes her life’s Chernoyble-esque meltdown as an opportunity for personal growth and re-evaluates her priorities (occasionally facilitated by sessions of mildly-illicit recreational drug use). Just as she gets back on track, Gracie’s world is metaphorically crushed like mint leaves at the bottom of a mojito. Freaked-out and a little too baked, she impulsively takes her first trip alone, to France.
La Belle Payée ends up being the battleground de-luxe for Gracie. Despite her inability to read a train schedule and stand up on a surfboard, she finally connects with the strong core of independence that had been hiding all along, underneath her Soïo-and-Keyo khaki and apple-green trench.
RANDOM ACTS DU MERDE is a witty chick lit novel that sits complete at 80k. If Miranda Hobbes, Emily Giffin and Seth Rogan formed a writing group, they could pen the sequel. Lucky for me, Ms. Hobbes is a fictional character and I’d be surprised if the other two knew each other (*whew).
I have lived in and around downtown Toronto for the majority of my almost-30 years and spent enough solo-traveling time in France to fall in love with the countryside, its people and succulently scrumptious pastries. I am a debut author (despite a very long and tedious MA thesis) who has had her fair share of Universe-shake-ups and through which, learned that when one door closes it’s best to just grab a screwdriver, jack out the bolts and walk through anyway.
So whaddya think? Do you want to read it? (say yes, say yes, say yes)
I'll occasionally be blogging about my road to publication now, sharing the rejections and hopefully a few triumphs.
My mantra throughout the process will be: "The Celestine Prophecy," which is the best-selling book ever (behind the Bible) was rejected SEVENTEEN times before an agent decided to represent it. (yikes)
Fingers crossed that the pro's think mine is awesome and sell-able!