WIP Critique … Part III

My third BETA reader has finished the latest draft of Lizzie Brogan and The Broadway Ghost.

We will call this woman … Ms. H and it is her I have looked to for the last year for the hard truth about my work. Without being destructive or negative, Ms. H has been able to zero in on the worst of my writing habits. At first this was a blow to my ego, believing as I did that I could simply sit down, bang out a great story, find the lucky agent who would represent me and off I’d go to collect my $200.

  STOP … Don’t collect $200 and go straight to jail, Fois. Sit there a while and think about yourself and how to survive your last badly constructed draft of your last badly constructed novel.

Ms. H is the only person who gets a hard copy and uses it to make comments and corrections. Not too many corrections on this one and a few great comments. Her bottom line is that she thinks this is a good book, that my work has finally begun to mature and she will accept no excuses for me not getting to the query.

I can now review and incorporate the feedback from each of my readers, begin the last edit of the book and the first drafts of my query.

Based on the interview with Dan Krokos posted by Christi Corbett, I listened to the BBC recorded interview with Janet Reid. I’d like to share what I believe is the most important part of this interview.

Ms. Reid stated that we (aspiring writers) spend months, sometimes years perfecting our novels and then expect to sit down in a matter of a few hours and construct t the query that will grab an agent who will sell our work.


This brash and refreshing young man, Dan Krokos, and his powerful voice has resonated a deep truth about who we are as writers. I can’t help but love him for the snarky remarks about “twitter” and I might ditto the same for Facebook and too much time travel on our blogs.

His success might reinforce the basic belief that the only books selling are YA Fantasy or Sci-fi, YA suspense, YA urban fantasy, paranormal, YA featuring mechanical devises and worlds that crumble like blue cheese on the pages of your local newspaper’s book review. Be on the lookout for the latest YA diet plan or cookbook … Tweens-for-Twinkies.org.


It is too easy to say the villain is that whatever genre is selling is not the genre I write, therefore, the cards are stacked against me, so I’ll go off and pout, publish myself, market on Facebook with my friends and relatives, make a blog tour of the writers I read and tell my granddaughter it was the best I could do.


My granddaughter, being half Dominican and bi-lingual, would understand that one.

I love the trend of the YA and MG books and what it has done for the reading material available for my grandchildren (two of whom are entering high school). I love that the next generation and the youngest of my  grandchildren can now read Mark Twain, Judy Blume, JK Rowling, along with JR Tolkien, Eddings, Terry Brooks and a list of new authors like Dan, I have never heard of or read.

My WIP has one thing none of those books have … it has my voice … the loud, crazy Italian voice of a strange grandmother who still turns up the volume on the music … cries at the movies and loves to cheer for the “bad” guy … and her voice deserves to be heard.

When was the last query you wrote? How much time have you devoted to learning the skill of the query, and the patience of the search? Are you willing to fail in order to succeed?

fOIS In The City

Monopoly “jail”


Filed under Random Thoughts

4 responses to “WIP Critique … Part III

  1. christicorbett


    Count me in with Ms. H on wanting you to start the query process. You’re ready!

    Thanks for posting the link to Dan’s interview.

    Christi Corbett


  2. Thanks for the kind words!

    I hope I don’t reinforce that idea at all. I wrote FALSE MEMORY because there was nothing else like it at the time (and, fingers crossed, there won’t be for a while longer). But we really need to open our minds and stop thinking so much about subgenres.

    I like looking at the books that sell A LOT. They surpass trend. I would say Hunger Games isn’t dystopian so much as it’s all the genres combined. It had romance, and thriller elements, some sci fi.


    • The reason there is nothing else like it is simple … there is no one like you. When the magic between the author and the reader connects and sparks fly … it hardly matters if you are a “newbie” or a veteran. Much success in your career.


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