My Week in Paris: Day 6

We had an interesting lecture today on networking. We had a panel of 3 writers who have all been published. Their techniques on using social media were all different, but the results are similar. I will talk more about this on another post.

The other lecture we had was on Literary Agents and their roles. Although I’ve researched enough on Agents, there were still helpful tips to be picked up. I will also feature this on another blog post.

Tomorrow, our class will be discussing Narration. My story will be critiqued. Yikes. I’ll let you know how that goes.

The workshop ends tomorrow. I know it’s only been a week, but it feels like forever. I am ready to go home.

My Week in Paris: Day 6

We had an interesting lecture today on networking. We had a panel of 3 writers who have all been published. Their techniques on using social media were all different, but the results are similar. I will talk more about this on another post.

The other lecture we had was on Literary Agents and their roles. Although I’ve researched enough on Agents, there were still helpful tips to be picked up. I will also feature this on another blog post.

Tomorrow, our class will be discussing Narration. My story will be critiqued. Yikes. I’ll let you know how that goes.

The workshop ends tomorrow. I know it’s only been a week, but it feels like forever. I am ready to go home.

Writing tip #7: Know Your Target Audience

You’ve written a book and you’re ready to get it published. Question is, do you know your target audience?

If you say it’s “everyone”, you may have a problem. Everyone is too broad and everyone is not what agents and publishers want to hear.

To get a better idea of your audience, start by thinking of your genre. Knowing your genre can help identify your audience.

For instance, let’s say you’ve written a love story and it falls under Women’s Fiction. Now you know a little more about who your readers are: women. But let’s get even more specific.

Try asking yourself the following questions (modify these questions based on your genre):
What’s the age group of these women?
Are they single, married or divorced?
Are they mothers?
Are they career women?
What sorts of books do they read? Who are the authors?

Once you’ve answered these questions, you’ll know exactly who your target audience is. This will help you pitch your story to the right agents. And if you’re self-publishing, this will help you in marketing your book.

 

Writing a Synopsis

Your book is done. Hundreds of pages of carefully picked words combined to create a story. Your query letter is finally ready and you’re about to send it out to Literary Agents but quickly realize you’re not quite prepared. You come across some agents that not only want a query letter but are also requesting for a Synopsis of your story. So you take a shot and start writing your first draft and you realize it’s not that easy.

Writing a synopsis can be frightening to some, but remember it’s not an impossible task.

Here are a couple of sites that I found to be helpful.

http://misssnark.blogspot.com/2005/10/synopsis-flopsis.html

http://absolutewrite.com/novels/writing_a_synopsis.htm

The Hook For Your Book

When someone asks you,“what’s your story about?”, they’re really asking you for the hook. Why is your story interesting and why should they bother reading it. The same goes for Literary Agents. They’re not just looking for a good story. They’re looking for a great story with a great hook. It’s important to know this because this is what helps them determine if your book will sell.

So what is a hook? A hook is like a logline, it’s what describes your book and what leaves Agents and readers wanting more. It’s what piques their interest and makes them want to read your book NOW.

Regardless if it’s fiction or non-fiction, think about how you would describe your book in a few lines while you’re in an elevator. You only have a minute or less to “hook” the reader and grab their attention. This is a great exercise especially if you plan on attending a Writers Conference. It’s guaranteed that the most popular question you’ll get is, “what’s your book about?” This is where your hook or elevator pitch comes in handy. You never know who you’ll meet, so make sure you come prepared.

Here’s a helpful link if you’d like to learn more about how to write a hook for your book:

http://www.archetypewriting.com/articles/QTers/logline_MM.htm

Good luck!

Literary Agents

I have always been curious about how writers get their books published. What process did they go through and how long did it take them?

Nicholas Sparks shares how he found his Literary Agent in his website. I love reading about his experience because he makes it sound so easy. Attached is a link to his site.

http://nicholassparks.com/ForWriters.asp?PageID=3

How did you find your Literary Agent? How did you get published? Are you still looking for an Agent? What has your experience been like so far?

Of course everyone has a different experience. I’m still going through mine. I’ve written a book that I love, have sent out queries, attended a Writers Conference, pitched my book and luckily got a few requests for my manuscript, but yet I’m not quite done. I am constantly trying to build my platform however way I can. Despite distractions and life’s challenges, I never stop writing.

In the perfect world, I would be writing every day—sipping espressos, sitting outside cafes with nothing but my laptop and a plethora of inspiration around me. But reality is different. I have chores and responsibilities like the rest of us. But I try. I try my best to write as if I was in a café… in Paris, people watching, when I’m really sitting on the couch watching my 2-year old daughter who I love dearly. Besides, isn’t that what writing is for? It’s for creating different scenes at different times based on your imagination. I like creating, that’s why I chose to write fiction. I prefer to write in a café in Paris on a beautiful spring day. I think I’ll stick to that for now and let my imagination run wild.