Thursday, May 3, 2012

The Dust it Off BlogHop and a little news



I’ve signed up for the dust it off bloghop being hosted by Courtney and Theresa. Head on over and sign up, they have some great prizes, and who doesn’t want to talk about their old projects.

The first day, May 3rd: We want you to post a 1-2 sentence pitch (Great way to practice pitches) about the shelved WIP.

The second day, May 5th: Post your favorite excerpt (300-350 words)

The third day, May 7th: Post what you learned from this WIP. You become a stronger, more rounded writer which each manuscript and we want to know what this particular work taught you.

The novel I’ve decided to pull out and dust off is probably to be expected: The Accidental Godmother. I wrote this novel in 2009. I spent most of 2010 writing a sequel, then decided to clean up the typos and query it. To say that may have been premature is a lot like saying there are some ideological differences between republicans and democrats: the biggest understatement of the year.

But today is Pitch day, so I won’t go into the shortcomings of my first foray into query/agent submission land (that way lies madness).

Title: THE ACCIDENTAL GODMOTHER

Pitch: Tessa Rapporin is about to graduate high school with a dire need to become an animator, a crush on Jason Garvy, and a serious case of princess envy. When her crush crushes her heart, Tessa lights out of the graduation dance and runs into the strange new boy in town doing a light show in the park. Only it isn’t a light show: he’s making a magical portal and Tessa gets sucked into a world of princes, Kings, faeries, and wizards, but even in the magical world, Tessa isn’t a princess. She’s a Faerie godmother, and they never get happily ever after.*

Okay, that’s a pretty long pitch, but that’s basically what I was using to lure agents to read my little novel (sighs from an overdose of nostalgia). As you can see it lacks a number of things, like motivation and stakes, and even with these shortcomings, some agents thought they’d like to read some pages…let’s just say that’s where the party ended.

If you’ve been around my blog for a while you recognize this as the piece I agonized over (was that really only a little over a year ago??? It seems longer).

And my news:

I don’t know why I feel compelled to give everyone updates on stuff, but I do. Last week I typed my very favorite words: THE END. That’s right, I polished of the Super Hero Novel of Awesome. Since it is a first draft, I happen to know that it’s full of crappy-crap and stinks to high-literature, but it’s a finished first draft. Ah, I love drafting.

But then I feel like I’ve hit a brick wall, what do I do now? I must have a drafting project on my plate. Seriously, it is the strangest thing, but I get shit done when I have a draft in progress. My productivity in every other venue of my life goes through the ceiling when I have a drafting project I’m excited about because I use the draft as a carrot: finish writing that science paper and you can have two uninterrupted hours of blissfully enjoying your characters in a world unlike this one.

So I need a draft. They help me. And I’m resurrecting THE ACCIDENTAL GODMOTHER. When I stopped querying, I knew that what that manuscript needed was a third to first person POV change. I needed to restructure the story and motivate my character so she was doing something and not being tossed around on the tides of Circumstance. Yes, the ending worked well, and even my toughest critic found he had a hard time critiquing because he was enjoying it so much, but the beginning… well, let’s just say it needed help. So I’m starting over from scratch with a POV change, a story restructure, and a lot of enthusiasm. I even have a shiny new title, but it turns out I’m really secretive about my titles… how silly is that?

*that's my original pitch and by no means an indication of my current ability to write a pitch or even the right pitch for this novel.

32 comments:

  1. It sounds fun. I love magic and fairies. :)

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    1. Me too, in fact all of my stories start to feel like they have magic... Oh wait, they do.

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  2. Sounds like an awesome read! I love fantasy reads!

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    1. Thanks, I'm a big fan of fantasy (hence the name of my blog).

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  3. Yay, I'm so glad you're resurrecting it! I love this pitch, what a cute story! And such a great voice too, "a serious case of princess envy."

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    1. This blog hop is actually responsible for the resurrection of two novels. The one I was going to do first, I started reading it and realized that it was closer than I'd expected. So yeah, this has been a very fruitful blog fest for me.

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  4. This is awesome! I love the pitch, and it sounds like it would be a great story!

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    1. Writing it was a blast. I got the idea for it and it just swallowed me whole. I'm really happy to be getting back to it too.

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  5. Very interesting idea. Glad to hear you're pulling it out and rewriting. I think I might do the same with mine.

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    1. Oh rewriting is such a strange beast. I find that it almost drives me nuts because there you are with a first draft again-urg! But I really enjoyed the last rewrite I did, and this one is worth it. I hope yours goes well.

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  6. I could just imagine her there in the park thinking it's a light show...LOL. Awesome.

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    1. Yeah, it's quite the shock for her when she finds out she's fallen through an interdimensional gate.

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  7. i love how your brain works, so similar to mine! her crush crushes her =)
    and thanks for the great description on my query!

    keep writing! your story sounds so quirky & perky! how cool would it be to escape mundania and be a fairy godmother! (even a bad one =)

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    1. Oh, but the best part is she can cast any spell she's ever seen, but the rest of the story comes true too. So she can cast the dress spell from cinderella, but the ricipient is then doomed to fall in love with a prince, be late leaving the ball, the whole nine yards. It was too much fun.

      And then the choices: cast the spell that turns her into the Maleficent's Dragon and risk being struck down by the good prince? Or let her friends die at the hands of an evil wizard? (Oh yeah, that story makes me do the evil laugh!)

      And I've got my fingers crossed for you for tonight.

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  8. Oh, how cute. I love this idea. Nice pitch.

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    1. Thank you, and thanks for stopping by.

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  9. Oooh, neat premise. I'm already a fan of fairy tales, but I love the spin on this one. A teen godmother. Very cool. And you've got the voice down perfectly.

    Congrats on finishing your first draft. (Yay for superhero novels!) And good luck resurrecting the Accidental Godmother. Can't wait to see more of it. ;)

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    1. Yeah, I've always wondered how the faerie godmothers got the jobs, and I figured watching them fumble through a few early cases might be funny. Then the idea just built on that.

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  10. Very cool premise! And congratulations on finishing your super hero story. That's awesome! :)

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    1. Thank you, I love finishing a project, even if it's just the first draft. It's such a solid step forward.

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  11. Congratulations on reaching THE END of your first draft. It's always such a good feeling in typing those two words.

    Nice to hear you're revamping this one. It sounds like an interesting story.

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    1. Thank you. I have to admit that when agents talk about writing the story that just won't let you go, for me it's this one

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  12. Wow. Going to start from scratch? You are amazing. Seriously amazing. I'm not sure I could do that... :)

    And congrats on typing THE END! I LOVE that feeling.

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    1. Oh man, getting to the end is soooooo wonderful. It's like a glass of cold water in the desert.

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  13. A Faerie godmother! That's great. And those last few words, "and they never get happily ever after" I love that concept. I'm looking forward to your excerpt.

    And I agree with Kelley you are amazing! Seriously starting from scratch is a huge undertaking and I give you all the credit in the world for jumping into it. I wish you all the luck with it. I hope this bloghop helps get your gears turning. Also congrats on The end. Greatest feeling ever.

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    1. Hmm, Blogger has a taste for comments today...

      Thank you, and yes, starting from scratch is a major undertaking. My concern with just doing an edit is that I know I can do better. I wrote the original in 2009, and I hadn't written a novel length piece of work for some 7 years prior to that. Then after I wrote this one, I wrote another two novels in rapid fire succession, and I learned SO. MUCH. And I totally love this story, so I gave my self a year away from it (wrote another two novels for good measure), and now I really think I can do something with it. So yeah, that was a really long way of saying, I can do it better, so I want to do it from scratch...

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  14. Sounds good to me! And congrats on typing The End!

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    1. Yes, The End, absolutely my favorite.

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  15. You sound really motivated with a good plan in hand. Any pitch is a good pitch if it makes people want to read more, so don't be too hard on yourself. BTW, I also love those last words about not getting happily ever after. Way to end with a punch! I've had similar problems with my beginnings, too. Especially with a passive MC. We'll get there. Keep up the great work!

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    1. Yeah, I'm finding that I need to craft the beginnings a little more. I've been great at crafting endings, but beginnings I'm still learning how not to stumble over them.

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  16. OMG, I love the sound of your stories! This one and Legacy sound great! Andrea

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    1. Thank you, I'm always pleased to find someone else who likes the sound of my crazy novels.

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I love comments! Let me know what's on your mind.