Tag Archives: Poetry

Living a week in an agent’s shoes

I recently had the opportunity to judge a writing contest.  I, and two other brave souls, volunteered to read all the anonymous entries, and choose one winner who would win “the pot” collected from the entry fees.

I am going to admit that this was a grueling experience at times.  I swore, somewhere around the seventh entry, that I would never do this again.  My relief when I’d finally read the last entry, and made my choice for winner, was overwhelming.

Then I got to thinking.  What I went through is probably not unlike what an agent or a submissions editor goes through every day.  They get a mailbox full of submissions, and they have to review them all and choose only one, or none.

Now, consider this.  The people who entered this contest paid an entry fee.  This is one of the reasons I volunteered.  I mean, seriously… if you are going to fork up ten bucks to get into a contest, you gotta know your writing is good enough to have a chance, right? I imagined my mailbox filled with fantastic, wonderfully imagined and carefully crafted stories.

Did I get that? Ummm… Not always.

Now, this is not to say that there were not some great entries. There were. But at times, I held my hand to my head and thought, “What was this person thinking”?

The good thing that came out of this is the realization that what you hear is true. There is a lot of poorly written or poorly executed work out there in the query-sphere.

If you can honestly look at your work and say:

1.       It has been edited multiple times

2.       It has been critiqued multiple times

3.       It has been beta read by multiple readers

4.       I have listened to critiques/beta comments and made changes without thinking “they just don’t understand me” and ignoring them.

5.       I have a story arc with a beginning, middle and end.

6.       There is a journey/change in the main character that makes the story worth reading.

7.       There is conflict.

I could keep going, but I’ll stop there.  If you can say “yes” to all of the above, then you at least have a chance of getting read by an agent or editor. If you work stands out as well written and conceptualized, you will be in the 25% or so that will actually be considered.  This is the place where good writing is a given. This is where you are in competition for the best story.

This is where you want to be. If you answered “no” to any of the list above, and you are querying and getting rejections, there is a possibility you are just wasting their time. (And yours)

What I realized judging this contest is that there must be hundreds of thousands of people out there that are wasting their time by submitting before they are ready.

Do your research. Make sure you have learned your craft.

Don’t be afraid to ditch a story you have worked on if it is not marketable.  Move on to something else. Every time you sit down to write you are better than the last time. Be patient until you can honestly say “This is my best work.”


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Do I read what I write? Umm… Huh? Do I have to answer that?

Are ya looking for Romancing Your E-Reader?  25 Ebooks Up for grabs!  Click Here to Enter!


Yep, I’m still hopping around in cyber-mayhem promoting “For the Love of Christmas” and

  “Make Believe”.  Today I am guest-posting on Jenny Keller Ford’s site, so please hop on over so I don’t get lonely.  I’m talking about breaking the rules a little.  Shhhh! Don’t tell anyone.

Come on over!

I love to see familiar faces!


Make BelieveFor The Love Of Christmas CoverWhy all the hullabaloo? Well, it’s to promote my two new releases “Make Believe” and “For the Love of Christmas”

That’s why!

And don’t forget to click on “Enter to Win” for a chance to win your choice of the two titles! Yay!

Oh, I almost forgot… A few random commentors along the tour path will win their choice of anthologies, too. So be sure to hop on over and say “Hi”


Hop on over and send me some love!

Jenny Keller Ford‘s blog- Why I don’t read what I write.


Visit my Anthology buddies!  They are celebrating too!

Jenny Keller Ford

J.A. Belfield

Kelly Said

Lynda R. Young

Terri Rochenski


Six Sentence Sunday – “And the Nightinglae Sang” by Kip Wilson

I recently purchased the anthology “Timeless, An Anthology of Young Adult Romance.”  Here are six sentences from one of those stories: “And the Nightingale Sang” by Kip Wilson

In this passage, our heroine is meeting the boy she loves for the first time in months.  He is a traveling minstrel, and a poet, and she is as in love with his music as she is in love with him.  Take it away, Kip!

Photo from my Goodreads list

“I would as gladly be a rose as a lily, if it gave me the chance to live in your poetry,” I said, waiting for him to offer me more.  Had he figured out my wish?

“You will most certainly find a home in my poems one day,” he murmured into my ear, “but for now I want you in my arms–as a real girl. How I have missed you, my love.”

Our time apart vanished in an instant, and I became his.

Awe!  Are you feeling the love?

For more sets os six from published works  as well as works in progress, check out the Six Sentence Sunday Site.


Flash Fiction Friday on Wednesday – Flight

Setting the timer for five minutes.  Topic:  Flight.  Go.

Flight.  Simple.  Clean.  Emotional. 

I spread my wings and open myself to the wind.  The sky pulls me up, gathering me within, taking me to heights most only dream of.  I flap my delicate yellow wings, directing myself, soaring above the houses and gardens.  The gardens—the wonderful flowers.

The breeze abates, and I glide downward … settling, nuzzling into the heart of a red-pedaled saucer.  Its nectar—sweet and simple—nourishes me, makes me thankful for all that is good in my life.


Flight.  Simple.  Clean.  I spy a yellow butterfly sitting on a red flower.  I swoop down, and snatch it from its perch.  It crunches in my beak.

Sweet, simple.  It nourishes me, makes me thankful for all that is good in my life.

Into the sky I soar.

Time:  Four minutes, sans cleaning up typographical errors.

I think that one will fall into the “poetry” category. Dunno.