Thursday, November 10, 2005

Agents & Pages, Or Lack Thereof

Happy Friday!

Oh, drat. It’s only Thursday.

Frankly, it makes no difference to me what day it is. Because as of this morning I am officially behind on my page count for Coral Moon. Only a few pages, mind you, but behind nonetheless. which means I will be working this weekend. Sigh. The numbers look so good on my Year-at-a-glance calendar. I look at ’em and see how they magically add up at the end of each week . . . month . . . to the end of the book. Makes it look so easy to write a novel.

My mother asked me this morning how I’m doing with the new book. I told her I’m “supposedly writing.” Emphasis on the former word. One of these days I’m gonna learn to plot with ease.

Yesterday I promised Lynette I’d answer her question on agents: “I got an email from one apologizing for taking so long to get back to me and that I probably already had representation, but if I didn't, was I still interested. I emailed her back saying I was still interested and she requested the manuscript, author bio and synopsis. I'm assuming this is good. So from this point, how long should it take to hear it yay or nay? Just curious. Is there a specific timeline? Like, the longer it takes, the better? Or...not?”

Doggone it all, here’s the problem with trying to answer this question: agents have not gotten their acts together. There is no “How We’ll Behave” blueprint they’ve agreed to follow. One might get back to you in a week. Another may take two months. A third might get back to you when you haven’t even sent in anything. (That’s a surefire way to make an author’s head spin. Oh, no, what did I do, send in that tell-all letter to my best friend?)

However, since this agent contacted you, I’d say it’s fair for you to expect a quicker turn-around. If you don’t hear from her in a month (and I think that’s more than enough time, given her come hither letter), e-mail her and ask what’s up.

Now, as to the title for Kanner Lake #3. You all are wonderfully creative, and I love to see your ideas. I have to give the most credit to Katie Hart, who came in on the money when she suggested Crimson Dusk. Not that the book will necessarily be titled this. But Katie picked up on the rhythm and meaning of the first two titles, and repeated them accordingly. And y’all know how big I am on rhythm. Violet Dawn and Coral Moon. First word is a color, two syllable. (Okay, violet is technically three, but the o is a soft syllable.) Second word is some part of the day, one syllable. Therefore, Crimson Dusk fits the bill. I actually have been thinking about Scarlet Eve. Same idea, really, but it trips off the tongue a little easier.

Oh, it’s so much fun to discuss a title for a future book. Way funner than plotting the one whose blank pages are staring me in the face. Actually, I do have two whole pages, whahoo. Want to hear the first line?

Kill and live. Let live and die.

Whadya think? Go ahead, have at it. The last time I posted my first line (for Violet Dawn), man, did I hear from y'all. Nothing like a little chance to edit to get your blood pounding.

See you tomorrow, on the real Friday.


Tracy Ruckman said...

A James Bond theme song popped into my head when I read those sentences. Live and let die. I know you had a different order, but my brain read the song.

C.J. Darlington said...

Wow, that's a great first sentence. When I first read it quickly I wasn't sure what it meant, but then I stopped and read it again slowly and was drawn into the story. Whoever this is, they have to make a choice, and someone's going to die. I like it.

Gina Holmes said...

A song popped into my head "Live and Let Die" Can't remember the rock group. Love the title Crimson Dusk. That's a winner. Looking forward to it and everything else you put out!

Stuart said...

yep, the "Live and Let Die" song is what I immediately thought of as well. Which I suppose is fine if that's what you want to go for, but it seems kind of distracting to throw the reader off onto a totally different thought line right at the start of your book ;)

Maybe just a word shift to get away from that overly recognizable frase but still keep the meaning...

Death to live. Life to die.

Wayne said...

Great opening line, Brandilyn. And I'm glad you explained that the second word had to be a part of the day; in keeping with the book being in Idaho I was going to suggest "Russet Spud." ;)

And Gina, "Live and Let Die" was sung by a little band popular when you were young and your heart was an open book: Paul McCartney & Wings. (There was also a Guns & Roses version.)

Loyd said...

Whoa! A dark and dangerous feeling in just two short sentences. I wiah I could read more. And yes, the music to Live and Let Die is in the background.

Lynette Eason said...

Thanks for the agent answer...darn it. So your character gets to "Let live and die" and I get to "Just sit and wait." Ah well, the joys of submitting. "Live and learn, eh?"

I too had to read that opening line a couple of times. My brain read the song too. But once I got it, I, who's gonna die?

Crimson Dusk? Hm, yeah I like that one. I also like Ebony Eve...I thought about that one after I'd already posted, so just another idea for you to chew on.

Thanks again for the "agent insight" and best of luck on catching up on your page

Lynette Eason

Lynetta said...

Great first line! It draws me in. Now I have to know what happens...
Happy writing!

Becky said...

I think your opening is powerful, intriguing. If the allusion to the song is one you do not want, I think a comma would change it. Here's Chicago Manual of Style: "A comma is not normally used between the parts of a compound predicate ... though it may occasionally be needed to avoid misreading or to indicate a pause." So I suggest: Kill and live. Let live, and die. (Comma added after live).

I like Scarlet Eve and Crimson Dusk, either one.

Love the reports on getting started with the new book. I can tell when you hit your stride, however--reports fade away! ; )


Zion said...

As much as the title pulls me in from a christian stand point im not sure that it conveys a positive message, but maybe if i could read an excerpt it would en lighten me. But it is very provocative.
Ps:Crimson Dusk

Domino said...

Crimson Dusk - FABULOUS. It blends well with the other titles.

Domino said...

I forgot to mention that in this ever-changing world in which we're living, you have to come up with a first line that doesn't distract the reader. However, your fans will press on past that sentence because they know how good the book will be. The anticipation makes you give it a try.

Now I have to find a way to stop this beatle that's bugging me.

Bonnie Calhoun said...

Love that Crimson Dusk!

now that you've given the first line, how about the second and third...and maybe the fourth and fifth?

Well you can't say I didn't try!

Katie Hart said...

Wow, I don't see how I missed this post. I just did a blogger search and found it. From November to February - that's a while. Glad you liked the title!