I’ve submitted my first query for a novel. Yeah!
I want to stop writing here, but Madame Agent is
probably hopefully reading this post. It wouldn’t be good to cut it off at line one.
I am submitting a novel I don’t think I have ever discussed here or anywhere else online. Maybe I have; I forget easily. I have read maybe ten scenes to others at writing groups and get-togethers. I think everything I have read from it has been well received, and when I tell writers who have heard both of my [possibly] query-ready novels, they all say they really like this one better. But that’s not my main reason for running with it now.
The main reason this novel needs to be published is it is uber-Canadian and 2017 is Canada’s 150th birthday. Is there a better marketing opportunity? It is a coast-to-coast-to-coast travel novel that dissects various political and social issues. Obviously, especially for anyone who has driven this land, a novel like this needs a compelling reason to make such a trip. There has to be anticipation; because, let’s face it, the Trans-Canada Highway isn’t exactly a Sunday drive. Think Marathon to Winnipeg, Winnipeg to Edmonton, or the 20 from Riviere du Loop to Montréal. How does one write about these stretches; and if one does, how does one keep the reader? I think I have created the reason, and all my listeners and readers agree it works.
But nobody but me has read the whole novel. An agent may, if they ask, but no reader has read more than one full scene, and no listener has been able to hear more then a few scenes over a few months. The story remains with me and on the page. I know I am an unreliable reader, even of other’s manuscripts, so do not listen to me when I say the premise works, the story works, the characters work, and the writing works. I am not qualified to make such assertions, but I feel it. Yes there is still bad writing in it. Nasty writing in places. I grossly overused stage management verbs in my initial draft, and I am sure I haven’t extricate all of them yet. I am also sorry to admit it needs a line edit. My last edit was for content, and while I am mostly happy with the story, I tend to make detailed mistakes of the brutal nature. We all do, but my plight is chronic and immune to medication. Anybody who has purged bad writing habits should know what I mean; I’ve had most of them. Well, I always knew the differences between then and than, lose and loose, and whether and weather; that sort of stuff is easy. Agreement, parallelism, and consistency are different tales.
2017 is Canada’s 150th birthday. Wouldn’t it be great to have an uber-Canadian page turner to read that year? That summer? Damn right it would, and that’s why a major Canadian agent or publisher should call me tomorrow!
I wish I could say I am being hyperbolic, but I’m not. Off base, unreasonable, and unreliable maybe, but hyperbolic, no. This novel needs to be published for 2017; I’m afraid I may have to go it alone.